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A source of quality journalism and reviews for more than 60 years, School Library Journal produces award-winning features and news coverage on: literacy, best practices, technology, education policy and other issues of interest to the school library and greater educator community. We evaluate a broad range of resources, from books and digital content to databases, in 6000+ reviews published annually.

SLJ readers include library professionals from school and public libraries, as well as educators from preschool to high school, and publishers and vendors with an interest in serving children and young adults. They rely on our publications, events, webcasts, and research to help navigate the challenges facing their respective institutions, and provide relevant materials and services their communities need.

Areas of Editorial Focus

Advocacy

Libraries are accelerators of learning. Connecting kids to content, serving up information literacy, and leading the way with emerging technology and how it fits in with emerging multiple literacies. As librarians in schools and public library settings serve up books for every reader, respond to the information literacy and technology needs of 21st century children and young adults, and inspire a love of learning, we at SLJ are committed to helping make the case for their support with coverage that frames the efficacy of libraries, places school librarians front and center in Future Ready and ESSA efforts,  helps illustrate their value, and offers models to point to for funding support and tools to help librarians advocate for themselves.

Collection Development/ Readers Advisory

A go-to resource for guidance on purchasing decisions and keeping collections strong, SLJ is the world’s largest and most authoritative reviewer of children’s and young adult content and insight into trends in kid lit and more. Sharing vast expertise on books, audio and video, music, new tech tools and apps, and other electronic and library resources, SLJ is read avidly by more than 100,000 librarians. In addition to publishing 6,000+ reviews each year, SLJ offers ongoing read alike guidance, category by category insights, and advice on coming trends in everything influencing the publishing arena for kids, from board books up to adult books for teens, print to digital formats, and diverse books, and more. Plus, look to SLJ’s blog network for the buzz about books all year, the Battle of the Kids Books, and, all things Caldecott, Newbery, and all things book awards.

Funding and Legislation

Managing libraries has never before been this challenging, or this dynamic. SLJ takes the temperature on funding directions, brings forward the creative minds and savvy strategies developing as a new management mindset turns outward toward the community and school beyond the library. Look for more integration of external input, creativity behind strategic collaborations, embrace of data-informed decision making, and more. Organizational reinvention draws on tools such as design thinking and UX principles to maximize capacity and drive impact and outcomes, all on mission. Long-term thinking takes relevance a step further to help ensure greater funding and shape truly sustainable institutions.

Innovation

Responding to digital and social disruption, and the growing implementation of new technologies in education, libraries are innovating faster and harder than ever before to support new trends, create new and more meaningful conversation around diversity and equity, and explore the world of learning as it evolves. SLJ helps readers innovate by taking leadership with broad coverage of emerging trends—sometimes in dedicated print issues—and profiles and case studies of innovative services and models at libraries of all kind to be replicated, iterated, and adapted; giving library professionals the tools and skills to keep up or create the cutting edge.

Leadership

In libraries, leadership comes from every level. As community and school leaders, librarians are often guides on civic or school-wide direction, forging the way with technology integration and setting the tone for peers across their stakeholder groups on how to best serve patrons from early learning to teen services. SLJ surfaces that strategic thinking from the manager and district levels as well as those in the trenches making their schools and children’s spaces ready for whatever comes next. Look for our ongoing coverage of the people who make libraries effective—via awards coverage, profiles of change makers, interviews and opinion pieces from thought leaders within and beyond the profession, and reporting on new initiatives designed to accelerate leadership skills.

Library Education and Careers

At every step in a library career—from first deciding to apply to library school to taking over a library space to preparing to become a manager or library leader—professional development and training is more crucial than ever. The rapid pace of change means that library roles are evolving, with librarians specializing in ways not imagined ten years ago. SLJ’s education and careers coverage profiles innovators at work transforming their environments, just as our own unique live and virtual professional development events help librarians stay abreast or retrain on topics too focused for a post graduate certificate and too detailed for a single session but required to thrive in the vibrant library field.

National Events Coverage

When librarians and leaders from across the profession gather to share best practices, brainstorm new approaches to challenges, and build their networks within and beyond libraries, SLJ is there. Via preview, on site, and wrap-up coverage, SLJ surfaces the conference news, new voices, and more you need to know from major meetings of the American Library Association (ALA), American Association of School Librarians (AASL), International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE), National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE), BookExpo America (BEA), and more.

Programming/Services/Curriculum

Answering the question “do we still need libraries in the age of the Internet” with a resounding YES, library programming delivers targeted service to strengthen schools and classroom learning, invigorate communities, and transform the lives of their users. SLJ’s curated coverage of innovative library offerings from around the country (and even the globe), amplifies their impact and helps librarians learn how to replicate best practices and illustrate relevance—and develop, test, and implement transformations of their own.

Publishing

Long a go-to source on trends in kid lit and beyond, SLJ goes well beyond book reviews to celebrate authors at every stage of their career, provide insight into publishing trends, and guide readers on the forces and voices shaping the publishing world and its offerings to libraries as it pertains to initiatives on summer reading, early literacy, and community engagement around books and authors. As a convener of thought leaders, SLJ also provides a forum for conversation on important developments, controversies, and complexity in the vibrant library and publishing worlds through coverage, the wide-ranging SLJ Blog Network, and more.

Space Design

Great spaces serve as a platform for next level service, enabling the new—from maker spaces and media centers to  areas hosting meaningful manipulables and relaxing reading nooks for early learning and beyond. A symbol of the library’s importance to its community, a place for invigoration and self-guided learning, a haven—library as place, whether in a school or a town center, is on the rise. SLJ’s design coverage provides insight into the range of possibilities for stretching space to incorporate programming on whatever budget to make inspiring spaces for kids.

Technology

Digital tools and edtech enable librarians to do more and be tech leaders in their schools and communities. They also create both new demand and new opportunities for access. As tech gets ever-more infused into much of the work in libraries, SLJ is there, with reviews of new tools, toys, and platforms as well as insights into strategic tech leadership and trends on the horizon. Dedicated to helping our readers be up to speed on how technology can transform services, enable access, accelerate learning, build library capacity, and both reshape what patrons demand and how libraries deliver. Ongoing editorial coverage complements a dedicated full-day virtual event, The Digital Shift, which draws thousands of live attendees together to expand their tech knowledge with the help of our expertise.

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