Dr. Drew's Infrequent Blog

26 February 2006

HASL Conference

Yesterday I woke up at an ungodly hour to be at the Hawaii Association of School Librarians (HASL) conference by 7:15. I am not a specialist in school librarianship, but had always planned on going to a meeting eventually, since many of our students are in this track. I went this time because I am concerned that a few principals have decided not to fund their school library media center specialist position. This is in response to Act 51 and No Child Left Behind. It seems to be the case especially in smaller schools, but I am concerned about the precedent. Appropriately enough, this year's theme was public relations. There was a good panel on this.

HASL Panel

The conference was held in Fern Elementary School. I enjoyed poking around the Library and seeing some differences from other libraries, such as (below)

Fern Elem. Lib. / Reading Buddies

There also was an interesting history day fair-like exhibit with a history of the school. From the beginning I felt very welcomed. Of course, it was a pleasure to see the smiling faces of alumni from my classes.

HASL alumni

I enjoyed talking with many other alumni and current LIS students too, who made me feel most welcome -- as well as Dr. Harada.

I was proud to show the advocacy website project that my Intro to LIS students are creating to the HASL SLIPR (PR committee). Members Faith Yokoyama and Karen Muronaga were very excited by the project and are grateful to my class for the efforts to get that started.

Fern Elementary is in Kalihi. I had not spent much time there, but it was different. Sometimes it was hard to hear a speaker because the auditorium's PA system picked up a local radio station. The crowing of wild roosters frequently interrupted the speakers. Someone explained that it is a good thing we are teachers first because we know how to pay attention. And everyone was very respectful and well organized. It all made for an interesting contrast to the HLA conferences, which have been held at gorgeous resorts (Lanai, Turtle Bay, Kohala...). Both have their own charm.

After the conference I crossed town to meet Lillian Nicolich (our ALA Student Chapter President) on campus. We tried to put our finishing touches on our ALA Student Chapter of the Year Award application. We put in about 6 hours on this. I think that our chapter deserves the award, but I am proud of everyone regardless of what the judges decide.

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