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SLA Blog » March 2015RSS Feed RSS

The SLA blog contains news about the SLA and topical information of general interest to our members. The blog has been running since 2004. An RSS 2.0 feed and information about how to subscribe to the blog are available.

Older blog posts are still available, though archived, on the website, but please check the date at the top of the post to make sure the offer or information is likely to be valid.

Smashing Apps: Ilford, 12 May 2015

New course from the SLA

Our course Smashing Apps, run by Bev Humphrey, will be held at Redbridge SLS, Central Library, Ilford on 12 May 2015. The closing date is 28 April 2015. Bookings received by 14 April 2015 are eligible for a £10 discount making the cost of the full days training £95 (SLA members), £125 (delegates who are not members of the SLA but work in schools that subscribe to Redbridge SLS) and £155 (non-members of SLA or Redbridge SLS).   Limited places are available so we recommend that you book early to avoid disappointment.  Payment is not required by the discount deadline date as long as an official order has been received.

Key Audience: Primary and secondary school library staff

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FREE posters for school libraries!

The final paperback in the Daughter of Smoke and Bone trilogy is coming Dosabout on Thursday and the publishers, Hodder, have some A3 posters which they are  offering to school libraries. Daughter of Smoke and Bone is YA, so would appeal to secondary schools and sixth form. To take advantage of the offer just email Naomi Berwin  at naomi.berwin[at]hodder.co.uk letting her know how many you would like. Obviously it will be ‘while stocks last’ so make sure you contact Naomi as soon as possible.

To see a copy of the poster click on the link below:

DOGAM Poster A3 Lres4

PDF file, 497 kB (Requires Adobe Reader)

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Reading for Pleasure: edgy, cool, or just boring? Make it infectious and survive: London, 7 May 2015

Our course Reading for Pleasure: edgy, cool, or just boring? Make it infectious and survive, run by Angie Curran, will be held at University College London, Bedford Way, London on 7 May 2015. The closing date is 23 April 2015. Bookings received by 14 April 2015 are eligible for a £10 discount making the cost for the full days training £95.00 for SLA members and £155.00 for non-members. A 2nd person accompanying a full paying delegate from the same school can do so for as little as £55.00 (SLA members), £75.00 (non-members).  Payment is not required by the discount date as long as an official order has been received.

Key Audience:  secondary school library staff

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Raising Achievement: the school library's role in supporting SEN and EAL students in KS2 and 3: Poole, Dorset, 7 May 2015


Our course Raising Achievement: the school library's role in supporting SEN and EAL students in KS2 and 3, run by Alec Williams, will be held at St Aldhelm's Academy, Herbert Avenue, Poole, Dorset on 7 May 2015. The closing date is 23 April 2015. Bookings received by 14 April 2015 are eligible for a £10 discount making the cost for the full days training £95.00 (SLA members), £125 (members of Dorset SLS not working in SLA member schools) and £155.00 (non-members of the SLA or Dorset SLS). Additional discounts available for a 2nd person accompanying a full paying delegate from the same school.

Key Audience: School Librarians and library staff; teachers with responsibility for EAL and Special Needs teaching; support staff in libraries and classrooms.

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Free resources for London schools!

Have you heard about the initiative to make London the world's first National Park City? 

Led by geography educator Daniel Raven-Ellison, this big initiative for London is quickly building momentum. Over 100 organisations from community organisations and councils to universities and international businesses are showing support for the idea that would change the way we all think about the city.

This July a proposal for the National Park City is being published that will be distributed to thousands of people across the capital. The proposal will be a full colour broadsheet newspaper that will be full of stunning photographs, important statistics, revealing infographics, ways to enjoy and improve London and details of the proposal itself.

A grassroots initiative, the proposal will be crowd funded and crowd distributed. Copies will be made available for free to schools and community groups who can distribute copies or want to use them for educational purposes. 

You can request free copies of the proposal for pupils at your school by following this link http://bit.ly/NatParkCityProposal

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35 hours per week, term time, permanent, required for 1 June 2015

Salary FTE £20,253 – £22,212 gross pa pro rata (£10.50 - £11.51 per hour)

Equates to starting salary £16,460.30gross pa

The School is seeking to appoint a Librarian due to the retirement of the current post holder.  Based within our recently refurbished Library this is a high profile role within the School requiring the highest professional standards and outstanding personal qualities.  The post is wide-ranging and the successful applicant will have the ability to lead and manage the Library service whilst inspiring students in the use of the library.    

For full details and to apply please visit:   www.stbarts.co.uk

Closing date: Sunday 19 April 2015

Successful candidates will be subject to a DBS enhanced check along with other relevant employment checks.

Tel: 01635 521255 E-mail: recruitment[at]stbarts.co.uk

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Crossing the Divide: Effective Induction and Transition Strategies for the Secondary School Library: Colchester, Essex, 16 June 2015


Our course Crossing the Divide: Effective Induction and Transition Strategies for the Secondary School Library which should have taken place on 17th March has been postponed until 16 June 2015. The venue for the event is Stanway School, Colchester, Essex. The closing date is 2 June 2015. Bookings received by 19 May 2015 are eligible for a £10.00 discount.

We apologise for any inconvenience caused to delegates who had booked onto the postponed 17th March session and hope they will be able to attend on 16th June.

Key Audience:

Secondary school library staff

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Aylsham High School’s Abbie wins inaugural Pupil Library Assistant Award

Teenage pupil Abbie Craske from Aylsham High School in Norfolk has been named Pupil Library Assistant of the Year, from a shortlist of seven committed young library lovers who assist in their school libraries. The new national award is made jointly by the CILIP School Library Group and the School Library Association.

Each of the seven shortlisted pupils raises the profile of the school library in various ways, including helping and supporting other pupils, building engagement and bringing fresh ideas to support reading and literacy at their schools.

Abbie was presented with the award by Charlie Higson and takes home prizes including a specially commissioned artwork designed by multi-award winning Chris Riddell. She said:

In the beginning the school library was my escape from life, now it enhances my life, and it is a privilege to give something back to the place I love.”

Presenting the award, author, writer and actor Charlie Higson paid tribute to the work of librarians calling them “irreplaceable”, and said:

“Librarians share the love and magic of books and when pupils get involved in spreading that excitement, that is incredible; at a time when there are so many competing distractions for their time and attention.”

Prizes and support for the initiative were sponsored by leading children’s publishers Hachette, Macmillan and Puffin, specialist children’s book suppliers Peters Books and Furniture; and by Authors Aloud UK, a company specialising in organising author visits into schools and libraries. Entries were judged by a panel of leading figures from the children’s book world and school library community.

Open to pupils who assist in school libraries across the UK, the award recognises the impact of their work on their school and its library and equally the value of the experience to the children’s lives.


Abbie Craske -  Aylsham High School, Norfolk


Morgan Boswell - Wilsthorpe Community School, Nottingham
Olivia Bowes - Antrim Grammar School, Antrim, NI
Megan Gardner -  King James’s School, Huddersfield, W Yorks
Francesca Hannay - Derby High School, Derby
Jessica Ince-  Heritage High School, Clowne, Derbyshire
James Kearney- The King’s School, Grantham, Lincolnshire

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Support the SLA: Give and Win Voluntary Lottery

SLA is pleased to announce the launch of our new fundraising lottery.  This is part of a National Council for Voluntary Organisations (NCVO) scheme, being handled by respected firm Capen.  

Give and Win Voluntary is an online fundraising lottery set up to help charities and voluntary organisations thrive.  Players can win cash prizes in weekly draws AND raise much-needed funds for their local charity in the process. How it works -

  • Players buy tickets online for £2 each – players can buy as many tickets as they want and can either play once, or set up a recurring monthly credit or debit card payment.
  • When paying for their tickets online, players are asked to select which charity they would like their ticket proceeds to go to. Charities get £1 of every £2 ticket sold.
  • Players are asked to select their chosen charity from a drop-down list. Charity must register to appear in this list – the organisation administrator just needs to set up a personalised online fundraising page.
  • The Give and Win Voluntary lottery draw takes place every week. Winners will be selected at random and notified by email if they have won a cash prize.
  • Charities receive any proceeds from tickets sales on a monthly basis by direct debit , after each draw
  • There is a jackpot prize of £25,000, with an additional £25,000 going to our cause if you win.

Join us by playing here!

By playing our lottery you can help us fund our valuable work, 50% of each ticket goes directly to fund our services.  Please support us and tell your friends to do so too.

Good luck in the draw, and many thanks for your support.
Please enter responsibly.

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SLA Inspiration Award

The SLA Inspiration Award is made annually to the school library space that shows inspiration, innovation, creativity and resourcefulness in its library design and in use, either through creative use of specific products or promotions. What matters is not how big the school library space is, but what it has achieved with the available resources and the challenges it faces.

The award is open to any school library space with no requirement to belong to the School Library Association or to have used DEMCO/Gresswell or LFC products. Nominated schools will be judged initially from the submitted nomination online form and supporting photographs/video to create a shortlist of possible winners. Guidance notes are available on how to prepare an effective nomination. Members of the independent judging panel, will make the final decisions as to the winning entry, and may then visit the school library spaces on the short list.

If you have rebuilt or refurbished your school library within the last year, please do consider submitting a nomination by16 March 2015.
The winners will be announced at the School Libraries Celebration Day ceremony in Autumn 2015.

Nominations for the Inspiration Award should be submitted online at the websites below (guidance notes are also available there on how to prepare an effective nomination):

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The Wicked Young Writers’ Awards are now open!

 Picture - Dan Wooller
Picture - Dan Wooller

Young writers in the UK and Ireland (from five to 25 years old) are asked to send in their original pieces of writing to hopefully wow this year’s panel of judges, chaired by Michael Morpurgo and including How to Train Your Dragon author Cressida Cowell.

There will be the opportunity to enter into five different age categories:

  • 5-7 years old
  • 8-10 years old
  • 11-14 years old
  • 15-17 years old
  • 18-25 years old

Entries will be judged on originality and creativity and may be in any form, from stories to poems and scripts. However each entry must be the entrant's own original work. You can apply as an individual, or ask your teacher to help you submit your entry.

Visit www.wickedyoungwriters.com to get hints and tips from Michael Morpurgo and Cressida Cowell on how they approach their own writing,

Pieces can be submitted until Friday 17 April 2015, and a shortlist of 100 entrants will see their entry published in the Wicked Young Writers’ Awards Anthology as well as being invited to a glamorous prize ceremony at the Apollo Victoria Theatre in London in July 2015.

The school that submits the highest number of entries as decided by the Competition judges will receive a special award that includes a bespoke Wicked workshop or school assembly.

The overall winners from each category will win a VIP family experience to Wicked London, including an exclusive backstage tour and cast meet-and-greet, £50 worth of book/eBook tokens, plus £100 worth of books for their school library donated by Hachette Children’s Books. You can find out more and learn how to enter on the Wicked Young Writers’ awards website - www.wickedyoungwriters.com.

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Welcome to the SLA Website:

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