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Surrey Schools wins national award for school library learning commons vision

leading-learning-implementation-2022.jpgSurrey Schools teacher-librarians Jane Kamimura, Tammy Le, Shobna Nathan, Heidi Kowalski, Kendall Brothers, Leigh Husieff, Nicole Hurtubise, Christianne Barnetson, Colleen Heidrich, Mandip Baines, Juliet Napier, Andrea LaPointe. (Photo from Canadian School Libraries)

The Surrey School District is this year’s recipient of the Leading Learning Implementation Award from Canadian School Libraries (CSL), recognizing the significant impact our teacher-librarians and library learning commons have on student learning at all 125 of our elementary and secondary schools.

The award honours school districts, provinces and territories that have systemically developed and enhanced their school library learning commons. CSL praised Surrey Schools on its vision of libraries as creative and collaborative hubs of learning that promote transliteracy (across various technologies and media), innovation and inquiry.

“I am proud to be a Surrey teacher-librarian every day!” said helping teacher Andrea LaPointe. “I am excited that our work is being recognized by Canadian School Libraries. This award represents the work of teacher-librarians past and present and the many people who support us.”

Outlined in the district’s award submission, the award is based on five standards of practice for school library learning commons in Canada (click on each link to see examples of Surrey Schools’ work):

  1. Facilitating collaborative engagement to cultivate and empower a community of learners
  2. Advancing the learning community to achieve school goals
  3. Cultivating effective instructional design to co-plan, teach and assess learning
  4. Fostering literacies to empower lifelong learners
  5. Designing learning environments to support participatory learning

CSL also noted teacher-librarians in Surrey are lifelong learners who strive to create safe places for students to embrace and explore their passions, interests and learning needs, with the support of district administrators and principals.

“Our teacher-librarians work with students to identify their areas of passion and then support them on their learning journey,” said Clayton Heights Secondary principal James Johnston. “Students from all areas of our community use the library throughout their school day and beyond. It is a hub of activity where students are encouraged to ask questions and work collaboratively.”

“Given that all elementary and secondary schools have library learning commons that are inherently collaborative and student-centred, Surrey’s teacher-librarians have been critical in leading, adapting and leveraging their spaces to better support reading motivation,” said Director of Instruction Kathy Puharich.

The Leading Learning Implementation Award will be formally presented on Friday, October 21, at the Treasure Mountain Canada 7 research symposium in New Westminster.

Congratulations to all of our teacher-librarians and thank you for everything you do for our students!

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