I read 151 books in 2014!

For my last post of 2014 I am proud to say I read 151 books this year!! After reading a newsletter from LibraryThing in which readers were challenged to, once again, read 75 books in the coming year, I was very surprised to find I’d already surpassed that total. After checking my blog archives, my book reading for 2014 is broken down as follows:

January = 32 books    July = 11 books

February = 12 books   August = 9 books

March = 10 books   September = 19 books

April = 10 books   October = 7 books

May = 15 books   November = 9 books

June = 7 books   December = 10 books

2014 GRAND TOTAL = 151 BOOKS!

What a pleasant surprise to have read a grand total of 151 books during 2014. Here’s to another 151 books for 2015! Happy New Year to all my blog followers.

What is your book total for the year?

An Open Letter in Support of Massachusetts School Librarians

I don’t know if you are aware of the dire state of School Librarians across the 50 states. Unfortunately, we are a dying breed. School Librarians in Massachusetts are attempting to pass a bill which would create a Commission to study the state of School Librarians in the Commonwealth, in order to come up with solutions on how to solve the inequity of service. Below is the letter I sent to every representative I could think of in the state. If you live in Massachusetts, please send a letter to your state representatives seeking their support on this bill. Thanks for your help. If you don’t live in Massachusetts, contact your state School Librarian Association to see what you can do to help keep School Librarians in your neck of the woods.

I am a School Librarian in Boston. Due to the fact that the state of Massachusetts doesn’t monetarily support School Librarians, I have to work part time in two different high schools in order to have a full-time job. I was lucky to get these positions, as I was unemployed for over a year trying to find a job. The only School Librarian jobs I could find were out West in the Worcester, Harvard, Berkshires, etc. areas or on the Cape, none of which were even reasonably close to Weymouth.

Do you know schools use real estate taxes to help pay for “extras” like School Librarians because the state of Massachusetts doesn’t give the schools money for them? My middle class community of Weymouth can not afford elementary or middle school librarians on their income, so only have a high school librarian. The same issue is true in nearby neighborhoods of Abington, Braintree, Quincy and others. However, as one reaches the wealthier communities of Milton, Hingham, etc. who have more income in their homes, suddenly School Librarians are funded across the grades. This inequity of service is rampant in Massachusetts which I have dubbed “The State of the Have’s and Have-Nots.” This inequity does a disservice to students in lower and middle class communities whose parents can’t afford a tax base of real estate which could pay for School Librarians in their children’s schools.

We School Librarians are not only certified librarians, but certified teachers. We teach 21st Century Skills which help students negotiate their way through the immense amount of digital information, integrating our lessons with Common Core and State standards. We support teacher’s curriculums in our lessons and, of course, share our love of literature with children to build up a generation of readers. We are not your Grandmother’s Librarian.

My two high schools are made up of students who are mostly African American and Latino. They, along with thousands of students across the state from low and middle class communities, have been denied the services of a School Librarian due to lack of funding.

Please consider sponsoring bill HD4254 “An Act Creating a Special Commission on School Library Services in the Commonwealth.” This Commission will investigate the state of Massachusetts School Library Programs to gather data which will give Massachusetts a long-range plan for School Library services. This Commission will help give answers to what can be done to remove the “Have/Have Not’s” status currently in existence in Massachusetts when it comes to School Librarians.

I look forward to having your support.

Thank you for your help.

Why I haven’t written in awhile

Hello everyone. Before I post my next book review, I want to tell you why it’s been awhile since I’ve written. After over a year of looking for a job, as of this past Tuesday, I have a job. Two jobs, as a matter of fact! I am working part-time in two different inner city high school libraries in Boston, working Mon., Wed. and alternate Fridays in one, and Tues., Thurs. and alternate Fridays in the other.

I made it through the 4 day week, (Monday was a holiday), and it was quite the challenge – not just traveling there at all hours of the morning to beat traffic, but trying to get two libraries running with time gaps of when I’m there to continue what I’d started and get to know teachers and students. Of course, the ideal job would be to have an every day presence, but school finances don’t allow for that option at this time. Who knows what the future will hold?

So, all this to say that my “read a book a day” will probably turn into a “read a book a week” review. My next entry will review an ARC I started awhile ago. Don’t forget about the “Dear Teen Me” blog tour and giveaway scheduled here for October 27th.

Thanks for following my blog!

TTYL