by Tiffany Hasker
Renee Swank, a second-generation teacher librarian for 13 schools in the Sylvan Union School District, has been an integral member of CTA’s Read Across America Committee for three years, acting as the liaison to the California School Library Association. Recently, Renee was selected to be the California Department of Education’s school library consultant, and we are thrilled to have such great representation at the state level.
What is your main goal for your new role?
To help districts understand how school library programs can play an integral role as Common Core State Standards are implemented, and promote access to print and electronic collections for all California students. Title I students should have the same opportunities as students in more affluent schools.
How different will your new role be from what you’ve been doing for decades?
Throughout my career as an educator, I have always advocated for quality education, especially for strong school libraries. Now I will be advocating on a much larger scale. The greatest difference is that now a large focus of my job will be advocacy, and I will no longer have to juggle trying to manage 13 school libraries while trying to teach information literacy.
What will you miss most?
Finding just the right book for reluctant readers and talking excitedly with kids about what they are reading (and getting shushed by my assistants for getting too animated talking with kids).
What are you most nervous about?
Honestly, coordinating my commute to work from Oakdale to Sacramento, and being away from my husband and beagles. The other thing I am nervous about, or am having difficulty coming to terms with, is I will no longer be a CTA member. In my opinion, the training I have received through CTA’s liaison program has prepared me to take on this new role.
Back to Main Page