There are many ethical considerations in librarianship. We face these ethical considerations within our schools and need to arm ourselves with the knowledge to assist our students , teachers, parents, and community. The definition of "Intellectual Freedom" is one that guides me as the teacher librarian. I will raise the awareness of this concept to our students, teachers, parents, and community. Also, I refer to several resources that are listed under the exhibits section on this page. The include The Library Bill of Rights and The Freedom to Read Statement.
With the emphasis on technology and information literacy within our school, we use Heartland Area Education Agency as a resource often. They have various materials available to educate our students, teachers, and parents about copyright and fair use. There are also numerous programs and activities about internet safety, fair use, and copyright readily available on the internet too. I love the NetSmartz program and others which I use with all of the grade levels at Van Meter.
As any library, we do have questions asked from time to time about censorship and books or resources used with the library and school. I feel like the one of the main keys to working through these issues is open communication and education of all involved in the education of our children. As I stated in the findingDulcinea Educator's That Rock article: fD: Do you ever have problems with different patrons disagreeing with your selection of books? SMM: I haven't had any disagreements in the high school library. I've had a couple parents of elementary school students bring books to my attention. The other day, a fifth-grader wanted to read A Child Called It. So I just emailed the parent and asked. She said "Yes, we've been talking about that book. Can you please check it out for my child?" It's all about communication."
We are all entitled to a wonderful, creative, stimulating, and intellectual education. As a teacher librarian, I am always seeking and educating myself about the the best tools and resources to make this happen with our school and throughout the world. As the name of the Van Meter Library states....Lets have a VOICE and be heard! That is what it is all about.
EXHIBITS OF ETHICAL CONSIDERATIONS
When I was lobbying for unblocking YouTube at Van Meter this year,
I went straight to the expert advice of Doug Johnson.
This is the question that I asked:
We have been debating about unblocking YouTube at school. Have you had any experience with this? And what is your take on this situation? My principal and myself are totally for it but we have a lot of teachers with resistance. They cannot see the educational benefits or uses of YouTube. We have a staff meeting on Friday and I am sure it will turn into a heated debate. I am contacting a few "experts" to get your take. :)