Library Advocacy Organizations Support EDUCATORS for America Act

The proposed legislation calls for funding to be used on school librarians, among others, to help improve the "educator pipeline" and support student development and achievement.

Members of Congress introduced the EDUCATORS for America Act last month. The bill, which aims to “mobilize and support states and local communities in improving the pipeline so that all schools have the diverse educators they should have, to support student development and academic achievement,” authorizes $500 million annually and specifically mentions school librarians as an area of need to be addressed with the funding.

The legislation calls for:

ALA released a statement in support of the bill.

“The American Library Association, and its division the American Association of School Librarians, applauds the introduction of the EDUCATORS for America Act, legislation which will strengthen the nation’s educator workforce and recognize the critical role school librarians play in our schools. Addressing the dire educator shortages which includes school librarians must be a top priority for Congress. This legislation, introduced in the Senate by Jack Reed (RI) and in the House by Alma Adams (NC-12), will support school librarian and other educator retention, diversity, and training, and will nurture the pipeline of future school librarians and other educators to ensure students have the resources and instruction they need. We thank Senator Reed and Representative Adams for introducing S.3360 and H.R. 6205, and for their longstanding commitment to America’s school library staff and the students they serve.”

EveryLibrary has launched a petition to support the bill and make sure school librarians aren’t lost from the wording as it moves through the process.

“We are asking for two big things,” the petition states. “One is that school librarians must remain in the definitions of the bill. The other is to ask for support for certified school librarians in all schools because we know that having a certified librarian helps failing schools turn around and extends the ongoing success of schools that are doing well. …

“One of the biggest challenges facing school districts is finding a diverse pool of candidates who want to become school librarians, teachers, counselors, and educators. That’s why the bill’s focus on supporting the ‘recruitment, preparation, and retention of populations that are underrepresented in the field of education, including teachers of color, first-generation college students, and teachers with disabilities’ is so important.”

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