The ultimate support package: educated library technicians in schools
Computing, Health and Science
School of Computer and Information Science
Employment of educated library technicians impacts positively on school library staffing and allows teacher librarians to focus upon their leadership role in information literacy development. A diverse range of non-teaching administrative tasks, previously undertaken by teacher librarians, may be allocated to library technicians. Freed from time constraints, the teacher librarian faces the challenge of providing “the best learning opportunities and highest quality learning outcomes for students” (Todd, 1999, p. 5). The possibilities for re-framing existing staffing models for Australian school and public libraries are discussed. In doing so, this paper revisits the experiences of several Australian school and public library technicians. Graduates of Edith Cowan University in Perth, Western Australia, were surveyed soon after completion of their degrees and the results published in 2002 (Clayden, 2002). Anecdotal evidence from various library-specific listservs has also been examined against the background of the earlier survey. The effects of changing work circumstances, ongoing adoption of technological innovations and an Australian government focus upon enhancing information literacy in schools and public libraries are also considered.