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Work of FOSIL Group receives international recognition

04 June 2020 Share

Framework of Skills for Inquiry Learning endorsed by endorsed by the School Library Systems Association of New York State

Congratulations to Darryl, and all the team and contributors for getting to this stage! Well done. 
Here's an abridged version of the statement, for the full version go to the FOSIL website. FOSIL is based on the Empire State Information Fluency Continuum (ESIFC).The ESIFC was developed in 2009 and re-imagined in 2019 by the School Library Systems Association of New York State (SLSA) under the leadership of Dr Barbara Stripling, Professor Emerita at Syracuse University. The ESIFC is endorsed by the New York State Library, the New York Library Association, the New York State Education Department, and as of April 2020, the FOSIL Group. This reciprocal endorsement marks a very important stage in the ongoing development of FOSIL and the FOSIL Group.  Dr Daniel Callison, Professor Emeritus at Indiana University, writes in The Evolution of Inquiry: Controlled, Guided, Modeled, and Free (2015, pp. 215, 11) that: "Inquiry provides a framework for learning. To become independent learners, students must gain not only the skills but also the disposition to use those skills (curiosity, open-mindedness, perseverance) along with an understanding of their own responsibilities and assessment  strategies. Stripling’s stages of inquiry apply neatly across grade levels and academic disciplines as a basis for a modern interdisciplinary, inquiry-based curriculum." Barbara Stripling, writing in ‘Empowering Students to Inquire in a Digital Environment" (2017, p. 52), adds that: "Providing a framework of the inquiry process is only the first step in empowering students to pursue inquiry on their own. The next step is to structure teaching around a framework of the literacy, inquiry, critical thinking, and technology skills that students must develop at each phase of inquiry over their years of school and in the context of content area learning."

FOSIL and the FOSIL Group have both a sound model of the inquiry process with a continuum of underlying skills that provides a framework for independent learning, and a growing international community of education professionals working together to more effectively develop these critical skills within an inquiry process. What makes this reciprocal endorsement even more special is the inclusion of an original water mark which is only possible due to the generosity of ESIFC’s talented colleagues.  The ESIFC was adopted/adapted as FOSIL under CC BY-NC 4.0 by Darryl Toerien, Head of Library at Oakham School, and is made available under CC BY-NC 4.0. 


Callison, D. (2015). The evolution of inquiry : controlled, guided, modeled, and free. Santa Barbara: Libraries Unlimited. Stripling, B. (2017). Empowering Students to Inquire in a Digital Environment. In S. W. Alman (Ed.), School librarianship : past, present, and future (pp. 51-63). Lanham: Rowman & Littlefield.