A committed teacher-librarian will have priorities that reflect the needs and focus of the school. These priorities will result from discussion and negotiation with stakeholders, particularly the principal and teaching staff. As such, the teacher-librarian needs to be assertive in what is achievable and what is unrealistic. It seems that there is a perception that a teacher-librarian has time which is elastic – as they do not have responsibility for a single class of students, they therefore are available to do last minute photocopying and select a class set of books at short notice etc.
I think it is important to negotiate the priorities that suit the school and not attempt too much at once. Focus on the priorities and doing them well without spreading yourself too thin on everything. This requires belief in the importance of what you are doing and the strength to set boundaries.
Clearly, positive communication is necessary. Communicate your priorities and ensure that people are aware of the active nature of the support you are providing the school community eg. through newsletter, library blog, website etc. Demonstrate your focus on being a participating part of the school community and working together to achieve goals for a shared vision.
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