Preparing New Hampshire's Librarians and Trustees for the 21st Century: a Report of the New Hampshire Task Force on Trustee and Librarian Education

Peggie Partello, Editor

Table of Contents

Executive Summary
Introduction
Statement of Problem
Project Scope and Objectives
Statewide Survey
Certification
Current Course Offerings
Continuing Education--Librarians
Redefining Library Education
Core Competencies--Librarians
Continuing Education--Trustees
Core Competencies--Trustees
Conclusion and Recommendations
Appendix A: Task Force Membership
Appendix B: Library Employee/Volunteer Survey
Appendix C: Trustee Survey
Appendix D: Educational Opportunities
Appendix E: Portfolio Documentation
Appendix F: State and Regional Associations
Appendix G: ALA Competencies: Young Adults
Appendix H: ALA Competencies: Children
Appendix I: Resources Consulted

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Executive Summary

New Hampshire's libraries play a vital role in creating lifelong learners and in supporting the state's schools, businesses, and government agencies. The library environment has been dramatically altered in the past two decades and will continue to experience rapid and substantive change. Computing and telecommunications technologies have forever recast the way in which services are delivered and have undeniably raised clients' expectations of library services. In addition, a growing complexity of laws and regulations is placing new and greater demands on librarians, staff, and trustees. It is crucial that those who work in libraries continue to enhance their skills and be prepared to adapt to this ever-changing technological landscape. Librarians, support staff, and public library trustees will need a wide range of skills to meet the information needs of New Hampshire citizens, to manage the libraries of tomorrow, and to successfully market library services.

In the spring of 1995, State Librarian Kendall F. Wiggin formed the New Hampshire Task Force on Trustee and Librarian Education to address these needs. The Task Force, comprised of librarians, trustees, and school media specialists, was charged with:

  • documenting the current state of librarian and trustee education in the state,
  • determining the educational needs of each group, and
  • making recommendations to the State Librarian regarding:
    • educational requirements,
    • means to meet the educational needs, and
    • roles and responsibilities for the New Hampshire State Library (NHSL), state library associations, educational institutions, and other government agencies and policy makers.

Statewide Survey Conducted

The Task Force developed two survey instruments - one for librarians and support staff and one for trustees - to assess current education levels for educational needs. Surveys were distributed to libraries with a request that all staff members, including support staff and volunteers, complete the survey. The trustee survey was distributed to all public library trustees. In all, 722 librarian surveys and 286 trustee surveys were tallied.

Certification

The Task Force found that there is confusion among public librarians over terminology. Many people assume wrongly that because they have completed the certificate program offered through the College for Lifelong Learning (CLL) that they are "certified." Yet the only certification program in New Hampshire is for professional school library media personnel. In exploring the implications of public librarian certification/accreditation, the Task Force found that the accreditation/certification of public librarians is deserving of much greater study but probably would not result in any immediate benefit to the public librarians in the state.

Continuing Education

Librarian education and continuing education requirements around the nation are as varied as the states themselves. The Task Force examined the availability of continuing education opportunities throughout New Hampshire, the difficulty of monitoring and assigning values to opportunities, and incentives to continuing education. Among its recommendations are:

  • the adoption of contact hours for public librarians, tied to a continuing education requirement in the Public Library Standards.
  • the development of courses and other training opportunities appropriate for public librarians, school library media personnel, academic librarians, and librarians in other types of libraries.
  • formal adoption of the portfolio approach to continuing education, in which individuals document educational events which they have attended.

While fully understanding that trustees are elected officials, the Task Force nevertheless recommends the establishment of a continuing education requirement for library boards as a whole, and strongly urges individual trustees to pursue continuing education opportunities.

Refining Library Education

The Task Force explored the issue of the relevancy of the Library Techniques (LT) program and found that, while this program was initially designed to raise the level of expertise of those managing public libraries in New Hampshire, the need and purpose have changed. The requirement in the Standards that the library director complete the LT program is placing a burden on many small libraries. It is the opinion of the Task Force that the courses offered under the current program are of high quality and are, for the most part, taught at the Master's level. Their completion, however, does not result in credits that can be applied to the Master's degree and the graduate is neither certified nor a degreed librarian. The Task Force found that many library administrators are looking for courses and training opportunities which can be attended by librarians and support staff. The LT program is the only opportunity that is currently available. In short, the Task Force found that the current program has gone beyond its original intent and has led to confusion about the mission of the program as it is currently defined.

The Task Force recommends:

  • phasing out the LT program and replacing it with Library Education modules based on a paper developed for the Task Force by Thomas Ladd, NHSL Consultant. The courses in the Library Education modules should be separate from any educational institution and the courses should be affordable, timely, and New Hampshire-specific where appropriate.
  • eliminating the requirement from the Standards.

While trustees are encouraged to educate themselves about libraries, there are no course offerings designed specifically for trustees. The Task Force recommends that:

  • a continuing education requirement for library boards be added to the Standards, and that
  • opportunities be investigated for developing trustee education programs through the University of New Hampshire (UNH) and other academic institutions that already have courses in the management of not-for-profit organizations.

Recommendation

The group spent a great deal of time discussing the recommendation regarding the continuing education requirement. The new recommendation is as follows:
  • Director:
    • level one-thirty contact hours per three years;
    • level two-sixty contact hours per three years;
    • level three-ninety contact hours per three years.
  • All other employees (with the exception of maintenance/janitorial employees) who work at least six hours per week:
    • level one-twenty contact hours per three years;
    • level two-forty contact hours per three years;
    • level three-sixty contact hours per three years.
  • At all levels a public library should provide an in-service training program for all volunteers and every employee working less than six hours.

Core Competencies for Librarians and Trustees

Adopting an appropriate method of measurement will allow all librarians and trustees to judge their individual needs for continuing education. To accomplish this, the Task Force recommends that NHSL and the state library associations adopt a set of core competencies for librarians and trustees. These can be used by NHSL in designing continuing education activities; by academic institutions to develop curricula; and by library administrators and trustees to develop position descriptions, help in recruiting, and to sensitize budget officials to the needs of the library. It is further recommended that the library associations develop or adapt specific sets of competencies for areas of specialization.

Conclusion

The continuing education of New Hampshire's librarians, library staff, and trustees is essential if the citizens and students of the State are to be well served by their public, school, academic, and special libraries, and if these libraries are to remain a vital part of their communities. To meet this need there must be affordable and easy access to a wide range of continuing education programs. The state library associations and NHSL must work together to meet these needs. The library community needs to adopt well-defined competencies or knowledge areas for librarians and trustees. Incentives are needed for trustees and librarians to avail themselves of continuing education opportunities. In addition, library trustees should set an example for other elected officials by actively supporting and seeking continuing education for themselves and their library employees.

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Introduction

New Hampshire's libraries play a vital role in creating lifelong learners and in supporting the State's schools, businesses, and government agencies. It is crucial that those who work in libraries continue to enhance their skills and be prepared to adapt to an ever-changing technological landscape. It is self-evident that librarians, support staff, and public library trustees will need a wide range of skills to meet the information needs of New Hampshire citizens, to manage the libraries of tomorrow and to successfully market library services.

To address these needs, in the spring of 1995, State Librarian Kendall F. Wiggin formed the New Hampshire Task Force on Trustee and Librarian Education, hereinafter referred to simply as the Task Force, comprised of librarians, trustees, and school media specialists. Mr. Wiggin stated that it was unclear whether or not those hired to work in libraries and those elected to library boards, indeed, even those currently employed, possessed the requisite skills that will enable them to adapt to the changing library environment. It was also not clear that the educational opportunities available in-state were appropriate and reaching the desired population. While programs such as the Library Techniques (LT) program may provide adequate educational opportunities to some, the cost has been prohibitive for many small libraries. New Hampshire has neither a certification program nor a continuing education requirement for librarians. The curriculum needs to be reexamined and updated to reflect current practice. Also, methods for the delivery of educational programming are changing.

The Task Force was charged with:

  • documenting the current state of librarian and trustee education in the state,
  • determining the educational needs of each group, and
  • making recommendations to the State Librarian regarding:
    • educational requirements,
    • means to meet the educational needs, and
    • roles and responsibilities for the New Hampshire State Library (NHSL),
    • state library associations, educational institutions, and other government agencies and policy makers.
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Task Force Membership

The Task Force was comprised of librarians from academic and public libraries, school media specialists, public library trustees, and consultants from NHSL's Library Development Services Section (see Appendix A).

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Statement of Problem

Many of those employed as librarians and support staff in New Hampshire do not have the appropriate skills to effectively manage libraries, meet client needs, and respond to the changing library environment. As elected officials, trustees do not need a background in librarianship to hold the position of trustee. And yet, because they handle complex and potentially sensitive library issues, it is imperative that they have a grasp of the principles of librarianship and how these principles are manifest in the day-to-day workings of a library.

The library environment has been dramatically altered in the past two decades and will continue to experience rapid and substantive change. Computing and telecommunications technologies have forever recast the way in which services are delivered and have undeniably raised clients' expectations of library services. In addition, a growing complexity of laws and regulations is placing new and greater demands on librarians, staff, and trustees.

The system of library education in New Hampshire has been in place for a number of years and needs revisiting. Heretofore, there has been little incentive for either librarians or trustees to avail themselves of continuing education. There have been no well-defined competencies or knowledge areas that librarians and trustees should strive to attain. For those self-starters who did wish to have a depth of knowledge about library management, educational opportunities have been limited. Other barriers to continuing education include high cost of programming, geographic availability, relevance of course work, the lack of work-related incentives, and time scarcity.

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Project Scope and Objectives

The Task Force addressed the following questions:

  • Do current course offerings meet the need? -- types of courses currently offered through the LT program were examined, and whether they were given at convenient times and locations.
  • Should the State require its public librarians to be certified/accredited? -- the implications of such a requirement were examined, as well as whether or not Continuing Education Units (CEUS) should be associated with workshops and other training programs.
  • Should public librarians and trustees be required to meet certain competencies and, if so, what competencies? -- knowledge areas needed by librarians and trustees to accomplish their jobs were outlined.

The Task Force examined the roles of the library associations, NHSL, the University System of New Hampshire (USNH), and other agencies that fill the continuing education needs of the New Hampshire library community.

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Statewide Survey Conducted

The Task Force developed two survey instruments -- for librarians and support staff (see Appendix B), and for trustees (see Appendix C) -- to assess current education levels and educational needs. Surveys were distributed to libraries with a request that all staff members, including librarians, support staff and volunteers, complete the survey. The trustee survey was distributed to all public library trustees. The Task Force tallied 722 staff surveys and 286 trustee surveys.

There were a few recurring themes. Respondents cited three factors that affected whether or not they attended training sessions or courses: location, cost, and taking time away from work. There was concern over low salaries. Most respondents believed that if certification is required for public librarians, there should be an assurance that higher salaries will be paid. The greatest number of people desiring continuing education were looking for graduate and postgraduate courses in information science.

The trustee surveys indicated that some trustees attend library-related workshops at least once a year but many only sometimes or not at all. Lack of time, location, and time of day workshops were offered, were the most common reasons for not pursuing continuing education opportunities.

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Certification--Public Librarians

There is confusion among public librarians over terminology. Many people assume wrongly that because they have completed the certificate program offered through the College for Lifelong Learning (CLL) that they are "certified." Yet there is no certification or accreditation program in New Hampshire for public librarians. There also seemed to be a link in people's minds between a certificate program and the level of pay they might expect to receive. The expectation seems to be that if New Hampshire had such a program it would ensure a higher level of pay for certified librarians or at least they could demand higher pay. It is not clear that the one necessarily follows the other. There is also the question of how such a program would be implemented and how it would be administered. In New Hampshire, such programs are established by the legislature and a board is charged with the administration of the program. They are self-funded through application and yearly certification fees.

After much discussion, it seemed clear that the accreditation/certification issue is deserving of much greater study but probably would not result in any immediate economic benefit to librarians in the state.

Certification--School Library Media Personnel

Requirements and competencies for professional library media personnel in the public schools are determined by New Hampshire State Administrative Rule 614.11, Library Media Generalist: Certification Requirements, Competencies, and Program Specifications, and Administrative Rule 507.20, Media Supervisor. There are no certification requirements for library assistants.

The certification process for professional library media personnel is administered through the New Hampshire Department of Education. The desired method of certification involves the procurement of a valid teaching certificate and the completion of a post-baccalaureate program in school library media services approved by the New Hampshire Department of Education as specified in Administrative Rule 502.01 and 502.02. At the present time, no such approved post-baccalaureate program is available in the state. Most successful candidates have already obtained a master's degree from another state.

Certification--Academic Librarians

Academic librarians must hold the M.L.S. or equivalent degree. There are no certification requirements for academic librarians.

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Current Course Offerings

A list of educational opportunities available to New Hampshire librarians was developed (see Appendix D). On the surface, there appear to be many opportunities. However, it is clear that the factors expressed in the survey about high cost and inconvenient locations and times limit access to many of these programs. It appears that there is little coordination of the development of these programs and, furthermore, that there is not a concerted effort to advertise their availability.

Members of the Task Force suggested that the list be expanded to include cost and whether the courses can be taken for credit or not for credit, including any cost differential. The list may be grouped by course offerings and by type of degree program.

Another problem particularly associated with the library education courses being offered through USNH -- formerly the Public Library Techniques (PLT) or Library Techniques (LT) courses -- was the time needed by the administration to change course content or develop programs on timely topics.

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Continuing Education -- Librarians

Librarian education and continuing education requirements around the nation are as varied as the states themselves. The Task Force examined the educational programming available to New Hampshire libraries, the difficulty of monitoring and assigning values to opportunities, and incentives to continuing education. CEUs also raised many questions. Chief among these concerned the authority to grant them and transferability to other states. While CEUs are often used to give credit for continuing education activities, there are other options, chief among them, contact hours.

Several states use contact hours to recognize continuing education. They are also used to indicate that a librarian has met a state-imposed requirement. Contact hours may be used in conjunction with a certificate program. Their transferability is not clear. However, the adoption by New Hampshire of a contact hour approach would make sense and could be tied to a continuing education requirement in the library standards.

Recommendations:

It is not up to the Task Force to set minimum education requirements for any library position.

  • Continuing education requirements should be linked to the Public Library Standards by whatever categories are assigned to libraries in the final standards (currently listed as Level 3, Level 2, and Level 1 libraries).

  • Formal adoption of the portfolio approach to continuing education, in which individuals document educational events which they have attended. These portfolios must be available for review at the time a library is certified. Portfolios are portable and can be transferred from institution to institution as employees change jobs or if they work at more than one library.

  • Recognize that continuing education opportunities arrive in many formats. Librarians need to be proactive in defining such opportunities for themselves and ensuring that their portfolios contain proper documentation. There are many examples of continuing education activities. Some of the most obvious include attending workshops and training sessions sponsored by NHSL, state, regional, and national library associations, vendors, and Coops. Other eligible activities include: organizing and teaching workshops, speaking at conferences, and publishing library-related articles and books. Standard forms should be used for recording information for the portfolios and must be signed by the presenter or organizer (see Appendix E).

  • Establish a group to develop incentives and recognize individual compliance. The University of New Hampshire's (UNH) definition of contact hours -- one hour in class equals one contact hour -- may be applied to assign a contact hour value to the recorded continuing education opportunities in portfolios.

  • The continuing education requirement for the three levels of public library certification are suggested as follows:
    • a. Level 3--ninety contact-hours per three years per employee
    • b. Level 2--sixty contact hours per three years per employee
    • c. Level 1--thirty contact hours per three years per employee

    (In Level 3 and Level 2 libraries, employees working less than six hours per week may be exempt from fulfilling the requirement. Otherwise, the continuing education requirement will not be prorated).

  • The arbiter of successful compliance shall be the Public Library Certification Board.

The Children's Librarians of New Hampshire (CHILIS) recommend that the state fund a full- or part-time youth services consultant through NHSL, responsible for coordinating continuing education programming for youth services in the state.

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Redefining Library Education

The issue of the relevancy of the library education program was also explored. While this program was initially designed to raise the level of expertise of those managing public libraries in New Hampshire, the purpose has changed. It is clear that many libraries are still managed by non- degreed librarians, but more libraries are seeking advanced degrees as new library directors are hired. The requirement in the standards that the library director complete the LT program is placing a burden on many small libraries. It is the opinion of the Task Force that the courses offered under the current program are of high quality and are, for the most part, taught at the Master's level. Their completion, however, does not result in credits that can be applied to the Master's degree. The certificate that is issued is of little value outside the state. Many library administrators are looking for courses and training opportunities which can be attended by librarians and support staff. The library education program is the only opportunity that is currently available.

There also seems to be confusion regarding the status of a person who has completed the library education program. The graduate is neither certified nor a degreed librarian. Although the Task Force discussed alternative education models such as a Bachelor's degree program in library science, the consensus was that anyone wishing to become a degreed librarian should follow a traditional course of study. In short, the current program has gone beyond its original intent and has led to confusion about the mission of the program as it is currently defined.

In response to a request from the Task Force, Thomas Ladd, NHSL Consultant, developed a position paper for replacing the LT courses with Library Education modules.

In the position paper, Ladd included the following reasons for changing from the current library education program:

  • Current high student costs -- In Fall 1997, one course cost $455, plus lab fees where applicable, and books.
  • Fewer enrollees need undergraduate credits than in the 1980s.
  • The twelve-week format is too long for many, too restrictive for flexible scheduling, and too short for material formerly covered in 14 to 16 weeks.
  • There is a difficulty recruiting and keeping instructors.
  • Some courses are unavailable in some geographic areas.
  • Sometimes scheduled courses are canceled due to lack of enrollment.
  • Some courses are inappropriate for continuing education due to length or cost, and most courses need revision.

The adoption of a modular course system would result in the following benefits:

  • Three- to five-week segments which allow flexibility in scheduling students, sites, and instructors.
  • Course modules that can be used for continuing education, for specific training, or combined as full course replacements.
  • Some modules may be acceptable as continuing education for Library Media Specialists or Generalists.
  • Combining continuing education and novice training in modules helps to fill classes and make them financially viable, increases demand in a geographic area, broadens collegial contacts, and varies the experiences of class participants.
  • There is a possibility of awarding credits if desired, via UNH and other colleges, and modules are easier to design and revise than full courses and are easier to coordinate with distance learning programs.

The adoption of a modular course system would result in the following disadvantages:

  • A probable loss of further college credits for those currently enrolled in the library education program.
  • New programs require a lengthy setup. Some factors include: establishing its administration, recruiting instructors, deciding appropriate payment, and scheduling modules.
  • Courses would need to be completely redesigned.
  • Coordination with continuing education programs would be labor-intensive.
  • Those currently in the library education program would need to be transferred to the new program.
  • The new program would have to comply with Public Library Standards.

Recommendations:

Develop a Website on the NHSL home page for listing continuing education opportunities.

  • Offer guidance for those wishing to pursue a traditional library education.
  • Develop greater coordination between the various continuing education committees of the library associations (New Hampshire Library Association, New England Library Association, New Hampshire Library Trustees Association, New Hampshire Educational Media Association) as well as academic institutions in New Hampshire and the region (see Appendix F for a list of organizations).
  • Explore various means for delivering basic and continuing education to librarians and support staff, including the establishment of partnerships with library schools involved in distance education.
  • NHSL should monitor the trends and needs of the library community in the state.
  • Phase out the library education program and drop the requirement from the Public Library Standards.
  • NHSL should develop and institute library education modules separate from any educational institution. The courses should be affordable, timely, and New Hampshire-specific where appropriate.
  • Recognize and cultivate the existing talent pool in libraries around the state, and encourage librarians and support staff to offer continuing education workshops.

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Core Competencies -- Librarians

Adopting an appropriate method of measurement will allow all librarians to judge their individual needs for continuing education. It is recommended that NHSL and state library associations and their sections, such as children's, reference, small libraries, urban libraries, and academic libraries, adopt the following set of core competencies which were developed by the Task Force. These can be used by NHSL in designing continuing education activities, by academic institutions to develop curricula, and by library administrators and trustees to develop position descriptions, help in recruiting, and sensitize budget officials to the needs of the library. It is recommended that the library associations develop specific sets of competencies for areas of specialization, e.g., children's librarian. It is further recommended that the library associations examine competency documents developed by national library organizations and adapt them for use in New Hampshire (see Appendix G and Appendix H).

A. Philosophies and Ethics

  1. Understand the mission and roles of libraries.
  2. Demonstrate knowledge of the legal and regulatory environment of the library, such as confidentiality of library records.
  3. Demonstrate a knowledge and commitment to the ethics and values of the profession, such as those advocated by ALA, New England Library Association, and other professional associations as appropriate.
  4. Understand the functions of librarianship: public services, technical services, administrative services, and technology.
  5. Demonstrate the ability and commitment to stay updated with current developments in librarianship and technology.
  6. Demonstrate willingness and ability to provide freedom of access, both physical and intellectual.
  7. Demonstrate ability and willingness to cooperate with other institutions to enhance the sharing of both traditional library materials and electronic resources.

B. Personal Attributes

  1. Demonstrate good interpersonal skills and ability to communicate effectively, both orally and in writing.
  2. Demonstrate a service orientation.
  3. Demonstrate ability to work independently and collaboratively.
  4. Demonstrate flexibility and adaptability to a diverse population and a changing environment.
  5. Engage in continuous self-evaluation and self-directed learning for professional growth.
  6. Demonstrate creative problem-solving.
  7. Demonstrate an awareness of historical and contemporary trends in the arts and sciences.

C. Administration

  1. Understand the governance of the library and the environment (political, organizational and legal) in which it operates.
  2. Demonstrate a knowledge of budgeting principles and statistical analysis with the ability to operate with standard accounting procedures.
  3. Demonstrate the ability to plan effectively and to develop strategies to implement the library's mission and goals. Possess the ability to evaluate policies and procedures of the library (using such tools as annual reports and published standards) and to set appropriate direction.
  4. Demonstrate the ability to plan for automation and new technologies.
  5. Demonstrate the ability to write grant proposals and raise funds externally.
  6. Understand and implement the principles of personnel management. Possess the ability to recruit, train, and evaluate staff and volunteers. Understand relevant state and federal laws pertaining to employment and personnel practices.
  7. Demonstrate a knowledge of efficient space utilization and physical plant maintenance. Possess the ability to plan for capital improvement and to work in conjunction with appropriate agencies.
  8. Demonstrate knowledge of the vendor markets from which libraries acquire materials, equipment, and services.
  9. Demonstrate the ability to develop and implement public relations and marketing strategies.
  10. Demonstrate the ability to provide training and continuing staff development.
  11. Demonstrate good leadership ability.

D. Collection Management

  1. Develop and implement a collection development policy which reflects the needs of the user population.
  2. Develop criteria for evaluating, selecting, retaining and weeding print and non-print resources.
  3. Demonstrate a basic knowledge of preservation and archival concepts and techniques.

E. Public Services

  1. Have a basic understanding of the organization of materials.
  2. Possess the ability to conduct appropriate and effective reference interviews.
  3. Demonstrate a knowledge of reference sources, both print and non-print.
  4. Possess the ability to provide effective reader's advisory and information and referral services.
  5. Design search strategies for accessing information and presenting them appropriately for the needs of the patron,
  6. Instruct patrons in the interpretation and evaluation of information.

F. Technical Services

  1. Understand how patrons access information.
  2. Adhere to accepted cataloging standards and classification schemes.
  3. Establish and apply effective procedures for handling print and non-print materials.

G. Technology

  1. Demonstrate a knowledge of basic computer operations including hardware and software.
  2. Acquire a knowledge of telecommunications and networking environments.
  3. Understand information technology trends.
  4. Demonstrate a knowledge of the appropriate standards for various technologies.

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Continuing Education -- Trustees

While trustees are encouraged to educate themselves about libraries, there are no course offerings designed specifically for trustees. The Task Force recommends that:

  • A continuing education requirement for library boards be added to the public library standards.
  • Opportunities be investigated for developing trustee education programs through UNH and other academic institutions that already have courses in the management of not-for- profit organizations.

Core Competencies -- Trustees

The New Hampshire Library Trustees Association has made trustee education a priority and has conducted workshops throughout the State for years. Yet not all trustee boards avail themselves of these and other continuing education opportunities.

While fully understanding that trustees are elected officials, the Task Force nevertheless recommends the establishment of a continuing education requirement for library boards as a whole, and strongly urges individual trustees to pursue continuing education opportunities. Further, the Task Force developed the following set of competencies specifically designed for trustees:

A. Philosophies and Ethics

  1. Understand the mission and role of public libraries.
  2. Demonstrate knowledge of the legal and regulatory environment of the public library, e.g., RSA 201 -D: I I (Confidentiality of Library User Records).
  3. Demonstrate knowledge and commitment to the ethics and values of professional librarianship, such as those advocated by the American Library Association, American Library Trustees Association, New Hampshire Library Trustees Association, New Hampshire Library Association, and other professional associations as appropriate.
  4. Understand the functions of librarianship: public services, technical services, administrative services, and technology.
  5. Demonstrate the ability and commitment to stay updated with current developments in New Hampshire Public Library Standards.
  6. Demonstrate support for freedom of access, both physical and intellectual.
  7. Demonstrate the ability and willingness to cooperate with other institutions to enhance the sharing of both traditional library materials and electronic resources.

B. Board Attributes

  1. Demonstrate good interpersonal skills and ability to communicate effectively and diplomatically, both orally and in writing.
  2. Demonstrate a public service orientation.
  3. Demonstrate the ability to work collaboratively.
  4. Through policymaking, demonstrate adaptability to a diverse population and a changing environment.
  5. Demonstrate creative problem-solving.

C. Administration

  1. Understand the governance of the public library and the environment (political, organizational, and legal) in which it operates.
  2. Demonstrate a knowledge of budgeting process within the community and how to use statistics effectively.
  3. Demonstrate the ability to plan effectively and to develop strategies to implement the public library's mission and goals.
  4. Demonstrate the ability to evaluate policies and procedures of the public library (using such tools as annual reports and published standards) and to set appropriate direction.
  5. Demonstrate the ability to plan for automation and new technologies.
  6. Demonstrate the ability to raise funds externally when necessary.
  7. Understand and implement the principles of personnel management.
  8. Be able to recruit and evaluate the library director.
  9. Understand relevant state and federal laws pertaining to employment and personnel practices.
  10. Demonstrate a knowledge of physical plant maintenance and the ability to plan for capital improvement.
  11. Demonstrate the ability to develop and implement public relations policies.
  12. Provide support for training and continuing staff development.
  13. Advocate for the public library in the community.

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Conclusion

The continuing education of New Hampshire's librarians, library staff, and trustees is essential if the citizens and students of the state are to be well served by their public, school, academic, and special libraries, and if these libraries are to remain a vital part of their communities. To meet this need there must be affordable and easy access to a wide range of continuing education programs. The state's library associations and NHSL must work together to meet these needs. In addition, library trustees should set an example for other elected officials by actively supporting and seeking continuing education for themselves and their library employees.

Within six months of the date of this report, it is recommended that NHSL:

  • Establish the position of Coordinator of Library Education. This person will:
    • Be responsible for developing a course of study,
    • Serve as liaison to the continuing education committees of the library associations and,
    • Begin discussions with the state's academic institutions about course offerings.
  • Drop the requirement that librarians complete the LT program and replace it with a requirement that they complete a series of workshops/courses developed by NHSL,
  • Develop a continuing education requirement for inclusion in the library standards,
  • Develop a web page for continuing education, and
  • Coordinate the distribution of material relating to appropriate courses.

In conjunction with the College for Lifelong Learning, it is recommended that NHSL:

  • Develop a strategy for terminating the LT program.
  • Convene representatives from interested academic institutions to:
    • explore the possibility of establishing an associate degree program for library technicians,
    • develop a guide to library courses, and
    • coordinate the distribution of material relating to appropriate courses.
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Appendices A & B | Appendices C-I