The Hyperlinked School Library would include the fundamental tenets of Library 2.0 which are:
• Reaching out to new users
• Building new services
• Responding rapidly to changing customer demands (Casey, 2007, p.37)
School libraries like public and academic libraries are adjusting to the changing way that information is retrieved and what users need from the libraries. Doug Johnson says that “all libraries have three primary responsibilities in the coming decade: providing ‘high touch environments in a high-tech world;’ offering virtual services, and standing ground as [user] information hubs” (as cited by Lynch, 2016, p.5). Rolf Erickson states that elementary school level libraries need to not just be a warehouse with print collections but a learning space (as cited by Lynch, 2016). And Steven J. Bell adds that K-12 libraries and academic libraries of the future will have “automated and mobile reference sections, on-demand collections and entrepreneurial librarians unafraid to learn new technology and implement cutting-edge ideas” (as cited by Lynch, 2016, p.6). These three individuals, Johnson, Erickson, and Bell, describe a hyperlinked library.
K-12 students have access to resources in a way that has never been seen before. But school libraries do not have to think they are in competition with other sources of information, but instead work together with data from other sources to the benefit of the student (Lynch, 2016). This fits well with how Library 2.0 is about “building change around the needs of your community of users” (Casey, 2007, p.24). School libraries like other types of libraries must know their “community of current and potential users and what they want and need” in order to follow the Library 2.0 model (Casey, 2007, p.35).
From my experience school libraries are small with few resources. However, as library professionals we can change school libraries to become a vital part of students’ academic experience. If I were to work in a school library environment I would want to be transparent and work from the heart. By examining what a hyperlinked school library should look like has made me realize how much students can benefit from a school library modeled after Library 2.0. A major goal of school libraries is to prepare students for academic life in college. There are many skills school librarians can teach students such as how to research and how to advance their reading and writing skills (Lynch, 2016). Investment in school libraries will positively affect the next generation.
Casey, M. E., & Savastinuk, L. C. (2007). Library 2.0: A guide to participatory library service. Medford, N.J: Information Today.
Lynch, M. (2016). Saving school libraries: how technology and innovation help them stay relevant. Edvocate. https://doi.org/https://www.theedadvocate.org/saving-school-libraries-technology-innovation-help-stay-relevant/