New England 
School Library Association
 Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, Rhode Island and Connecticut   

Executive Summary from September 27, 2014

21 Nov 2014 6:53 AM | Anonymous

Executive Summary: NESLA Board Meeting, September 27, 2014

Portsmouth Public Library NH

Attendance: Susan Ballard, Peg Becksvoort, Helen Burns, Gerri Fegan, Carol Gordon, Irene Kwidzinski, Michelle Luhtala, Bob McLaughlin, Linda McSweeney, Merlyn Miller, Mary Ellen Minichello, Judi Paradis, Carol Sweny, Julie Williams

Treasurer’s Report: NESLA is not meeting membership targets or conference income. We now have $17,055.08 in our budget. Memberships are up for renewal this month.

Habits of Mind: Bob McLaughlin and Susan Ballard provided us with information about the Habits of Mind project in NH. This project works in conjunction with EBSCO databases. Bob explained that the project was developed to address the lack of awareness among educators of the resources available on the deep web, and there is an understanding that 
educators do not always go to the research to get resources they can use to solve difficult problems in their practice. The Habits of Mind attempts to connect librarians and their resources (e.g., EBSCO databases with resources on best practices) to educators and show them how this makes an important impact on their ability to work with students and address  issues in their classrooms/schools. This project needs librarians to be trained to provide Habit of Mind support to educators.

Lib Chat provides educators with the potential to access librarians and other educators either live or in an asynchronous manner. EBSCO is also willing to provide webinars as needed to train librarians on their resources. The librarians in this project would also be introduced to current test groups. This would serve as pilot to see what would work well as it goes up to scale. Those who participate would also get free access to EBSCO resources. The time commitment is up to the librarians participating. 
VT and MA do not have EBSCO as state databases. We discussed how this program might be rolled out in non-EBSCO states. 

Susan urged us to keep in mind that this initiative rolled out through AASL to NESLA and it is important for NESLA to stay involved in the regional development of Habits of Mind. Susan also noted that as our profession moves more toward virtual librarianship, this provides librarians with a means to sharpen those skills. Bob will set up webinars for LibChat and EBSCO databases (using a doodle poll) so that we can get training on these tools, and will provide us with the flyers that we asked about.

Motion: Carol Sweny moved and Carol Gordon seconded that New England School Library Association will become a partner in the Habit of Mind project, and participate in a grant that Bob will write asking for funding from the Knight Foundation. Unanimously 

AASL Affiliate Assembly: Regional officer selection was not clear at the Las Vegas ALA Affiliate Assembly meeting. Susan Ballard came to discuss this with us. She explained that AASL recently changed the leadership structure for AASL Affiliate Assembly. AASL recently adopted a leadership development committee. There are now two regional positions: Regional Director serves from each region to sit on the board of AASL and votes as a member of the board for AASL. Regional Representative serves to facilitate discussions at Affiliate Assembly and coordinates work for Region I and is viewed as a potential regional director. All positions are in ALA Connect on the AASL Affiliate Assembly page where a handbook is provided. We had a discussion about how to select the regional representative and whether NESLA could choose or fund the regional representative. Region I Director: Michelle Luhtala said the major work done at ALA was rewriting the mission statement for AASL. Irene noted that those of us attending conferences need to communicate what is happening back to NESLA. She also urged us to use NESLA listserv and Facebook pages to reach out to a regional audience. Helen Burns recommended using Wild Apricot to push out email to NESLA members. Several people can have access to Wild Apricot, which would enable all member states to use it to push out information from each member organization.

State Reports:




New Hampshire

Rhode Island


Mary Ellen Minichello reminded us about the CASL/CECA conference at Mohegan Sun in October with speaker from the MIT Innovation Lab 

Membership: Irene is hoping for a serious focus on membership this year, and shared an article based on a book called The End of Membership As We Know It by Sarah Sladek. She said this book discusses a shift in how people view membership organizations and are looking for more value from their membership.

Irene expressed disappointment that there is not more buy-in from state organizations. She reminded us that without buy-in from each state, it is going to be difficult for NESLA to keep going. Irene is hoping that we can get more buy-in this year and keep things going forward. This will require additional work from each state to keep this going.

We held a lengthy discussion about possible ways to provide programs, increase income, and add value for our members. Carol Gordon talked about thinking carefully about how NESLA can add value by providing something that states cannot provide and librarians cannot access anywhere else. She recommended some sort of short retreat to discussing 
building a plan for the next 2 years. We agreed to host a retreat later in the fall to do some planning and setting priorities about how to best use NESLA to work with our regional members.

Irene is going to keep working on membership and will contact New Hampshire to get input about how to use Wild Apricot to help in this initiative 

Awards: These are due on February 1 and urges states to consider nominations.

Next meetings:

• Retreat November 2

• Virtual meeting Thu. Nov. 20 at 5:00 p.m.

• Virtual meeting: Wed. Feb. 4 at 6:00 p.m.

• May face to face meeting: Sat. May 9

Adjourned: 1:55

Respectfully submitted,

Judi Paradis


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