We have updated our cookie policy to reflect recent changes in the UK/EU law concerning the use of cookies and tracking technologies. We use cookies on this website (including the page you are currently viewing) to ensure that the site functions smoothly and to help us understand how we can improve it. If you continue without changing your settings, you are agreeing to receive all cookies from the SLA website.

or view our cookie policy to find out more

Show Menu | Show Sidebar (Login/Search)

School Librarian of the Year Award 2018


The School Librarian of the Year Award is the SLA's prestigious honour to recognise the excellent work that is carried out in school libraries every day, and to highlight the best practice of those whose work is outstanding.

Let's give our best school librarians the recognition they deserve!

Finalists for 2018

We are delighted to announce that four exciting and innovative librarians have made it onto the Honour List for the School Librarian of the Year Award 2018.

Nicki Cleveland

Cleveland, NickiNicki Cleveland is School Librarian (and Higher Level Teaching Assistant) at Cannon Park Primary School on the outskirts of Coventry. Despite having only 3.5 dedicated hours in the library and no real budget, Nicki has revolutionised the way the teaching staff at Cannon Park Primary think about Reading for Pleasure; due to working in close partnership with the staff around her, it is now at the forefront of the school's ethos. Thinking outside the box and passionate engagement with the children's book world via Skype and Twitter have enabled Nicki to enrich her pupils engagement with books in an extremely powerful way. 

Dr. Chhavi Jain

Chhavi Jain

Dr. Jain manages a large, multilingual library and makerspace in Manav Rachna International School (Gurugram) outside New Delhi in India, where she supports 1,100 children aged 6–17 years. Dr. Jain is breaking down barriers and raising the profiles of school librarians in India with her innovative and rigorous approach to her work. Exemplary in her promotion of reading with numerous author visits (in person and via Skype), pupil awards and international collaborative projects, her enthusiasm, professionalism and passion for reading is recognised throughout the school.

Alison Kennedy

Alison Kennedy

Alison Kennedy is Head Librarian at St George's Ascot, an independent boarding and day school for girls 11-18 in Berkshire. Alison's role reaches far beyond the bookshelves of her library, and as Head of House, Form Tutor, Extended Project Qualification Coordinator and living on site she is truly embedded in her school. Her enthusiastic and proactive approach to promoting Reading for Pleasure ensures the library is seen as a hive of energy and imagination, and creative use of social media plays a key role in engaging the entire school with the library and its resources.

Emma Suffield

Emma Suffield

Although her official title is Learning Resources Centre Manager, Emma Suffield is seen more as a member of the family by many of the 1400 students at Saint Wilfrid's C of E Academy in a diverse area of Blackburn, thanks to her personalised, thoughtful and supportive approach to engaging all readers across the school. Innovative, imaginative practice, frequently going the extra mile, has led to a whopping 450% increase in book borrowing rates since Emma became responsible for the library in 2014.

Full profiles will be published once a week from 6 September (in alphabetical order) on the SLA website.

The complete Press Release can be downloaded here:

SLYA Honour List 2018 Announcement

PDF file, 2 MB

Requires Adobe Reader



The Award Ceremony will take place on Tuesday 9 October 2018 in Covent Garden, London.


The School Librarian of the Year Award is sponsored by the Foyle Foundation and Macmillan Children's Books.

Foyle LogoThe Foyle Foundation is an independent grant making Trust supporting UK charities which, since its formation in 2001, has become a major funder of the Arts and Learning. The Foundation also operates a community small grants programme and a national school library improvement scheme.

Macmillan Children LogoMacmillan Children's Books: www.panmacmillan.com

The SLA is grateful to the following supporters who have generously donated prizes for the finalists' schools:

  • Accessit Library
  • Andersen Press
  • Bloomsbury Publishing
  • Bonnier Publishing
  • Browns Books for Students
  • DLT Media
  • Education Umbrella
  • Excelsior Award/Paul Register
  • Faber & Faber
  • Laurence King Publishing
  • Literary Gift Company
  • Macmillan Children's Books
  • Nosy Crow
  • Oxford University Press
  • Penguin Random House
  • Peters
  • PSP Asset Protection
  • Softlink
  • Walker Books