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ERIC Number: EJ922995
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010-Dec-1
Pages: 4
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 0
ISSN: ISSN-0362-8930
Are There Any Volunteers?: A Pain-Free Approach to Getting the Very Best out of Parents
Barack, Lauren
School Library Journal, v56 n12 p40-43 Dec 2010
While volunteers can be the backbone of a library, there's a fine art to crafting a well-oiled team of helpers, especially in these tough economic times when a nonpaid assistant can end up taking one's job. Case in point? Librarians at Bridgewater Middle School and Raynham Middle School in Massachusetts recently lost their positions, and parent volunteers are now being trained to shelve and circulate books--despite the objections of the Bridgewater Raynham Education Association. While handing a library over to parents is certainly not the norm, many media specialists are now working with skeleton crews. Of course, recruiting students is often the most ideal scenario. They're already on-site and usually earn some sort of school credit, which gives them an incentive to show up on time, and regularly. Those who make the cut spend the first week of school receiving extensive training, which includes learning how to shelve, answer phones correctly, speak appropriately with teachers, and treat fellow student library users with respect. To get the best out of volunteers, it's essential that they feel useful. Volunteers who arrive at the library only to discover that there's nothing for them to do may end up wondering why they agreed to donate their time. So it's important for a librarian to know how--and where--to use them. In the end, it's all about figuring out how best to use mom and dad and not depending on them for the essentials. And that's where a can-do attitude and a knack for going with the flow may come in handy.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A