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October 2010
Volume 2, Issue 10

Continuing Education Alert

Check Your Calendars!!

National Reading Group month
October, 2010

National Friends of Libraries Week
October 17-23, 2010

Teen Read Week
October 17-23, 2010

National Novel Writing Month
November, 2010

Native American Heritage Month
November, 2010

National Gaming Day
November 13, 2010

Library Development

Tribal colleges receive Tribal College Initiative Grant

Sisseton Wahpeton College, Sinte Gleska University and Oglala Lakota College have each received a Tribal College Initiative Grant through the USDA. The award granted $196,500 to 22 tribal colleges across the country.

Sisseton Wahpeton College Librarian Delight Robertson explains that the plan is to use the grant funding and its required match to begin on a new library building, which means that most of it will be spent on blueprints, planning and demolition to prepare for construction. OLC will renovate its college center and SGU plans to look at classroom space needs.

SD Division of Securities sponsors essay contest for high school seniors

South Dakota high school seniors have a chance to win big money via a contest sponsored by the South Dakota Division of Securities. Funded by a grant from the Investor Protection Trust, seniors as well as their sponsor/teacher can win. Top prize for seniors is $5000 and there are four placement levels. Sponsor/teachers can win cash prizes of $100-$500.

To enter, seniors must write an essay on a given topic. The topic for this year is “How to create financial independence by understanding five principles of investing.” There are five separate topics that must be covered in the essay, requiring the student to do a large amount of research before the writing begins. School and public librarians can provide assistance to those students wishing to enter the contest and needing help with the research. In addition, the research staff at the State Library is also available for help.

The essays are judged based on the content related to the topics. The Securities Division places the papers into four levels. Two winners are then randomly drawn from each of those four levels. Contest entries must be submitted by Jan. 18, 2011. More information can be found at the SD High School Senior Essay Contest Web site and packets were mailed to personal finance instructors at every school district.

Board Talk: The Complete Library Trustee Handbook will wow you

By Daria Bossman, Asst. State Librarian for Development Services

Book Cover: The Complete Library Trustee Handbook

Every now and then a book comes along that really wows you and you can’t put it down. No, I am not talking about some fantastic new novel, a suspenseful mystery or a magnificent historical book or documentary. That kind of reading is fairly common among avid readers. This is more surprising. It is a library resource book, a “how-to” handbook. I am talking about one of those professional books we all have to read to find the ideas, facts and figures we need to write reports and give accurate presentations. We’d hardly call them enjoyable; perhaps necessary, but not really fun reading.

Well, this month I’d like to introduce you to a library handbook I would seriously recommend every South Dakota Library Board order and have on hand. It is inexpensive, easy to read, not too long and most importantly it is an informative and a practical, step-by-step resource on the pertinent library issues of the day. It is entitled, The Complete Library Trustee Handbook, by Sally Gardner Reed and Jillian Kalonick. As far as I can tell it lives up to its title. In terms of giving boards practical ideas, and direction for governing and leadership, it is very complete.

This is a 2010 publication sponsored by the newly merged national organization, The Association of Library Trustees, Advocates, Friends and Foundations. You can find this newly formed organization online at ALTAFF. The publisher is Neal-Schuman or you can order the book though the ALTAFF Web site, ISBN # 978-1-55570-687-6. We have two copies in the State Library professional collection so feel free to interlibrary loan one of these copies if you prefer.

When was the last time (if ever) your board did a self-evaluation? Good question. Take a look at the sample self-evaluation in the chapter, “Doing it Right: The Best Practices of Effective Library Boards.” You might want to make some copies of the total evaluation (fewer than 50 questions) and use it as a springboard to some general discussions about your community’s informational needs and goals. Other chapters tackle the topics of advocacy, fund-raising, strategic planning, and the Library Board’s unique leadership role in the local community.

Public libraries are uniquely “American.” They are a product of our local communities and reflect local culture, values and economy. They reflect and reinforce our first amendment rights, our pursuit of equality and equity among people, and our love of free access to information and our freedoms of speech, “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.”

Take a look at his new handbook. It will be well worth your time! Then let me know if you agree with me or not — that it is a very useful book… and even pleasant to read!

ALA, board, contest, grant, Kyle, Mission, Native American, Sisseton, trustee

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