Public Libraries Advisory Committee – April–August 2021 Report


The group met 4-6 times this reporting period.

Recent Activities

First Activity
Reviewed Public Libraries Magazine themes and suggested articles and writers to fulfill the themes. Committee members reached out to potential contributors through direct contacts, our listservs and networks. Reviewed and edited received materials for the issue.
Meets PLA’s strategic goals for Advocacy and Awareness, Equity, Diversity, Inclusion and Social Justice, Leadership, Organizational Excellence, Transformation

Second Activity
Selected the 2020 Featured Article of the Year. Read featured articles from previous year, scored them and recommended winners.
Meets PLA’s strategic goals for Advocacy and Awareness, Leadership, Organizational Excellence

Third Activity
Selected new columnists for "The Big Idea" and "The Wired Library" columns for ongoing issues follow the departure of the last columnists. We reviewed resumes and writing samples. Using rubric and discussion, selected new columnists for both regular columns.
Meets PLA’s strategic goals for Advocacy and Awareness, Leadership, Organizational Excellence

Fourth Activity
A subcommittee wrote an article for the former Insights column on mask wearing, compliance, and suggestions for compliance responding from a former question. It was published in the sister online journal, Public Libraries Online.
Meets PLA’s strategic goals for Advocacy and Awareness, Leadership, Organizational Excellence

Fifth Activity
Served as Guest Editor to the July/August 2021 online issue on the anti-racism/social justice issue. In addition to helping with soliciting writers and giving editing suggestions, Kathleen allowed committee members to guest edit specific issues. I was thrilled to help with this one and bring together thoughts from all over public libraries how we can amplify voices from across public libraries and learn from each other's experiences.
Meets PLA’s strategic goals for Advocacy and Awareness, Equity, Diversity, Inclusion and Social Justice, Leadership, Organizational Excellence, Transformation

What will your group be working on for the next six months?
While this was my first tenure as chair, I've rolled off of the committee after my second year. During my tenure, we selected and confirmed issue topics, writers, and contributors. We voted on the top featured articles from the previous year. Some committee members assisted with writing.

Does the group have any policy recommendations, ideas with financial impact, or other items to bring to the PLA Board for discussion or action
We selected to publish at least one issue as an online versions. I've received more feedback on that issue since it was easily shared online. It saved on printing and mailing costs.

Do you have any suggestions for future products or resources (excluding conference programs) to be developed based on your group’s work?
A webinar on what Public Libraries looks for in writers and how to submit good articles from solicitations.

Are there other PLA/ALA committees your group might collaborate with to benefit the work of all?
The committee might benefit from a report from the PLA Council Member.

Have there been any issues related to meeting participation/attendance for any of the group’s members?
No

Is there anything PLA could have provided during this time that would have helped your group with its work?
No. Thank you for the opportunity.

Submitted by Kimberly B. Knight on 09/15/2021

PLA 2022 Conference Program Subcommittee – April–August 2021 Report


The group met 4-6 times this reporting period.

Recent Activities

First Activity
Individual subcommittee members reviewed 439 program proposals for the 2022 PLA Annual Conference. Each proposal was reviewed by three committee members which meant that each committee member was responsible for reviewing approximately 100 proposals.
Meets PLA’s strategic goals for Advocacy and Awareness, Equity, Diversity, Inclusion and Social Justice, Leadership, Organizational Excellence, Transformation

Second Activity
Due to the pandemic the committee was unable to meet at ALA Annual as usual. So the committee met via Zoom 5 times (a total of 6 hours) during August and September to select the 97 programs to be offered during the PLA Annual Conference in 2022. An additional 5 programs will come from PLA staff.
Meets PLA’s strategic goals for Advocacy and Awareness, Equity, Diversity, Inclusion and Social Justice, Leadership, Organizational Excellence, Transformation

What will your group be working on for the next six months?
The committee will attend PLA 2022 and will assist PLA staff with various conference activities (at the 2020 conference committee members helped staff the info desk and assisted in making sure programs were running smoothly).

Does the group have any policy recommendations, ideas with financial impact, or other items to bring to the PLA Board for discussion or action
Not at this time.

Do you have any suggestions for future products or resources (excluding conference programs) to be developed based on your group’s work?
During the program selection process we identified some topics/speakers that may be best suited to future PLA webinars and shared those ideas with our PLA liaison, Angela Maycock.

Are there other PLA/ALA committees your group might collaborate with to benefit the work of all?
Not at this time.

Have there been any issues related to meeting participation/attendance for any of the group’s members?
No

Is there anything PLA could have provided during this time that would have helped your group with its work?
No, Angela was extremely helpful as we tackled this year's program selection under pandemic conditions!

Submitted by Laura McGrath on 09/15/2021

Technology Committee – April–August 2021 Report


The group met 0 times this reporting period.

Recent Activities

First Activity
Members of the committee presented at ALA Annual on patron digital privacy practices. This is a critical topic for public libraries to address as more patron data are shared with vendors and used by libraries to enhance services.
Meets PLA’s strategic goals for Transformation

What will your group be working on for the next six months?
We will put together proposals to present at conferences and discuss topics relevant to technology in public libraries, including broadband, recruiting, and funding.

Does the group have any policy recommendations, ideas with financial impact, or other items to bring to the PLA Board for discussion or action
Developing a relationship between the PLA Board, PLA Technology Committee and SHLB (Schools, Health, and Libraries Broadband Coalition) could benefit libraries all across the country as everyone seeks funding for broadband. I'm not sure if it fits in this category but it is something that might cause smaller libraries to consider applying for the Emergency Connectivity Funds and other federal funding in the future.

Do you have any suggestions for future products or resources (excluding conference programs) to be developed based on your group’s work?
It would be worth investing in helping libraries recruit and retain technology professionals in public libraries. I am not sure what form that could take but recruiting talent is incredibly difficult for all technology areas of focus in public libraries.

Are there other PLA/ALA committees your group might collaborate with to benefit the work of all?
CORE is a natural partner and many committees would be a good fit. As an example, facilitating a relationship between the PLA Board, PLA Technology Committee and the CORE/OCLC Spectrum Scholars in Library and Information Technology could benefit all. Perhaps PLA Technology Committee members could serve as mentors?

Have there been any issues related to meeting participation/attendance for any of the group’s members?
No

Is there anything PLA could have provided during this time that would have helped your group with its work?
It would help to better understand how the committee can support the PLA Board and its strategic direction.

Submitted by Anastasia Diamond-Ortiz on 09/13/2021

Committee on Family Engagement – April–August 2021 Report


The group met 4-6 times this reporting period.

Recent Activities

First Activity
Completed second cohort of the Advancing Family Engagement virtual classroom series of 8 sessions; to date the program has registered and taught about 120 library staff. Planned third cohort to launch in September 2021, with nearly 100 new registrants.
Meets PLA’s strategic goals for Leadership, Organizational Excellence, Transformation

Second Activity
Oversaw PLA’s IMLS grant, “Exploring a program co-design approach to better serve and engage low-income, Latinx communities” which conducted a literature review, national survey, and planned focus groups at three pilot libraries.
Meets PLA’s strategic goals for Advocacy and Awareness, Equity, Diversity, Inclusion and Social Justice

Third Activity
Requested board approval to move from task force to standing committee, and in doing so revised our charge and added liaisons to ALSC, YALSA, and AASL.
Meets PLA’s strategic goals for Organizational Excellence

Fourth Activity
Initiated a new grant partnership with WGBH Boston to develop tools on computational thinking to be used in libraries and other education settings (“Fostering Joint Parent/Child Engagement in Preschool Computational Thinking by Leveraging Digital Media, Mobile Technology, and Library Settings in Rural Communities (WAISL)”)
Meets PLA’s strategic goals for Transformation

Fifth Activity
Continued to liaison to multiple groups: helped PBS Kids write blog posts for Public Libraries Online; designated a reviewer for the National Association of Family, School and Community Engagement’s new family engagement body of knowledge guidelines; worked with the National Center for Families Learning on its fall 2021 library-focused webcast; and collaborated with PLA’s Project Outcome to write an informational brief on measuring family engagement programs.
Meets PLA’s strategic goals for Advocacy and Awareness, Leadership, Organizational Excellence, Transformation

What will your group be working on for the next six months?
Launching the third cohort of the Advancing Family Engagement series; planning the fourth cohort to launch in early 2022; strengthening relationships with ALSC, YALSA and AASL

Does the group have any policy recommendations, ideas with financial impact, or other items to bring to the PLA Board for discussion or action
No

Do you have any suggestions for future products or resources (excluding conference programs) to be developed based on your group’s work?
The Advancing Family Engagement series has yielded many new examples of family engagement programs and strategies, both via presenters and also from “final projects” that the second cohort of learners developed. These could contribute to a new PLA publication, such as an “Ideabook 2.”

Are there other PLA/ALA committees your group might collaborate with to benefit the work of all?
As noted above, ALSC, YALSA and AASL

Have there been any issues related to meeting participation/attendance for any of the group’s members?
No

Is there anything PLA could have provided during this time that would have helped your group with its work?
No

Submitted by Jo Giudice, Ashley Brown on 09/03/2021

Digital Literacy Committee – April–August 2021 Report


The group met 2-3 times this reporting period.

Recent Activities

First Activity
Advised on and launched PLA’s new partnership with AT&T, which is a $690,000 grant that will update 10 DigitalLearn courses and develop 2 new courses, create a AT&T DigitalLearn site, and fund libraries to do technology training programs.
Meets PLA’s strategic goals for Advocacy and Awareness, Transformation

Second Activity
Continued to promote DigitalLearn and work with individual libraries to purchase and brand their own DigitalLearn sites. During the period, one new site was launched (Miami-Dade County Public Library) and two new library systems started the process with PLA.
Meets PLA’s strategic goals for Advocacy and Awareness, Organizational Excellence, Transformation

Third Activity
Advised on PLA’s partnerships with Microsoft, which include providing Wi-Fi access points to rural libraries to extend their signals and working with four urban libraries to promote skilling and certification and provide free computers to learners impacted negatively by COVID-19.
Meets PLA’s strategic goals for Equity, Diversity, Inclusion and Social Justice, Transformation

Fourth Activity
Submitted a program, New Challenges – and Solutions! – for Your Technology Skilling and Workforce Programming, for LibLearnX, which will cover upskilling older adults, engaging Black and Latinx populations who suffered from longstanding inequities, moving beyond computer basics, and teaching technology skills virtually.
Meets PLA’s strategic goals for Equity, Diversity, Inclusion and Social Justice, Transformation

Fifth Activity
Brainstormed on how the committee and PLA can address services to the formerly incarcerated, increase library focus on certifications and other training that leads to employment, ensure staff competency in terms of technology, and other issues.
Meets PLA’s strategic goals for Equity, Diversity, Inclusion and Social Justice, Transformation

What will your group be working on for the next six months?
Completing the Microsoft and AT&T projects, orienting new committee members, reviewing potential updates and new content for DigitalLearn, and planning educational initiatives for libraries that help them do skilling programs for communities and for staff

Does the group have any policy recommendations, ideas with financial impact, or other items to bring to the PLA Board for discussion or action
No

Do you have any suggestions for future products or resources (excluding conference programs) to be developed based on your group’s work?
Over the past few years, the committee has brainstormed many topics and potential agendas for educational programming in various formats (day-long regional trainings, “micro-lessons” delivered via YouTube or Tik Tok, etc.)

Are there other PLA/ALA committees your group might collaborate with to benefit the work of all?
Given its increasing focus on digital equity, the committee is interested in strengthening relationships with the Black Caucus American Library Association, REFORMA, and others

Have there been any issues related to meeting participation/attendance for any of the group’s members?
No

Is there anything PLA could have provided during this time that would have helped your group with its work?
No

Submitted by Brandy McNeil on 09/03/2021

Committee on Equity, Diversity, Inclusion and Social Justice – April–August 2021 Report


The group met 4-6 times this reporting period.

Recent Activities

First Activity
EDISJ Matters Column for PLA Magazine: We continued to write our EDISJ Matters column. This platform has enabled us to broaden our reach and more collectively engage PLA members. We've used the column to introduce people, concepts, ideas, and information with an EDISJ focus. Having the standing 'real estate' in the magazine has allowed us and this important work to remain front of mind for PLA members.
Meets PLA’s strategic goals for Equity, Diversity, Inclusion and Social Justice

Second Activity
PLA Leadership Lab: Embedding EDI in Library Leaders: This workshop—consisting of six live virtual classroom sessions—explored transformational leadership through the lens of the current social crises, emphasizing equity, diversity, inclusion, and social justice (EDISJ) principles and approaches, supplemented by leadership development and asset-based community development tools. Members of the EDISJ Committee acted as both small group moderators, and large group facilitators.
Meets PLA’s strategic goals for Equity, Diversity, Inclusion and Social Justice

What will your group be working on for the next six months?
In the coming months the EDISJ Committee will continue to meet regularly, continue the EDISJ Matters column, develop and present EDISJ-centered trainings and work together to ensure that they continue to address and amplify the need for having difficult, but meaningful conversations around race, racial equity, diversity, inclusion and social justice.

Does the group have any policy recommendations, ideas with financial impact, or other items to bring to the PLA Board for discussion or action
We would very much like to find a way to begin our Equity starts with us trainings. While we understand that this may look different than the in-person trainings that we've offered in the past, we know that we have the audience and interest for these training opportunities.

Do you have any suggestions for future products or resources (excluding conference programs) to be developed based on your group’s work?
N/A

Are there other PLA/ALA committees your group might collaborate with to benefit the work of all?
As the PLA/ARL/ALA-led Building Competencies for Racial Equity Task Force wraps the development of its Framework for libraries, it would be wonderful if the EDISJ Committee could in some way work collaboratively with them in sharing out this work, perhaps developing a community conversations model that can include public, academic, special, and school libraries.

Have there been any issues related to meeting participation/attendance for any of the group’s members?
No

Is there anything PLA could have provided during this time that would have helped your group with its work?
As always, it was a pleasure working with Scott and Leighann! They were supportive, helpful, and were dynamic allies in our work.

Submitted by Christina Fuller-Gregory on 08/24/2021

Continuing Education Advisory Group – April–August 2021 Report


The group met 0 times this reporting period.

Recent Activities

First Activity
Group promoted the online call for submissions for PLA webinars.
Meets PLA’s strategic goals for Advocacy and Awareness

Second Activity
Group reviewed webinar submissions for recommendation based on quality and strategic areas of focus.
Meets PLA’s strategic goals for Advocacy and Awareness, Equity, Diversity, Inclusion and Social Justice, Organizational Excellence

What will your group be working on for the next six months?
We will continue to promote PLA webinars, promote webinar submissions and review the next round of submissions.

Does the group have any policy recommendations, ideas with financial impact, or other items to bring to the PLA Board for discussion or action
No

Do you have any suggestions for future products or resources (excluding conference programs) to be developed based on your group’s work?
No

Are there other PLA/ALA committees your group might collaborate with to benefit the work of all?
No

Have there been any issues related to meeting participation/attendance for any of the group’s members?
No

Is there anything PLA could have provided during this time that would have helped your group with its work?
We loved the new system related to scoring the webinars. It was so easy to use for the committee members to submit and great for tabulation.

Submitted by Sarah Tansley on 08/21/2021

Social Worker Task Force – April–August 2021 Report


The group met 2-3 times this reporting period.

Recent Activities

First Activity
Completed "Guidance for Social Work Positions at the Library" handout outlining best practices for incorporating professional social work in a library system.
Meets PLA’s strategic goals for Advocacy and Awareness, Equity, Diversity, Inclusion and Social Justice, Organizational Excellence

Second Activity
Continuing work on manuscript for Trauma-Informed Lens Workbook (as yet un-titled) that outlines the pervasive impacts of trauma on library communities and offers a toolkit approach for how library staff can engage with the public to mitigate re-traumatization. We are hoping to have the workbook finalized and published in the Fall of 2021.
Meets PLA’s strategic goals for Advocacy and Awareness, Equity, Diversity, Inclusion and Social Justice

Third Activity
Provide guidance to ALA/PLA members on questions that are delivered to the committee through direct communication and the Social Work Interest Group. Examples include information on peer programs, security programs, intern supervision, and developing social work programs in libraries.
Meets PLA’s strategic goals for Advocacy and Awareness

What will your group be working on for the next six months?
Our main focus will be to promote the forthcoming Trauma-Informed Lens Workbook. We are planning a pre-conference session on the content of the book. Additionally, we will look into other ways to share the content of the workbook (webinar series, etc).

Does the group have any policy recommendations, ideas with financial impact, or other items to bring to the PLA Board for discussion or action
Not at this time

Do you have any suggestions for future products or resources (excluding conference programs) to be developed based on your group’s work?
Not at this time

Are there other PLA/ALA committees your group might collaborate with to benefit the work of all?
The Social Work Task Force could be a consultant for the Advocacy and Strategic Partnerships Committee and the Committee on Equity, Diversity, Inclusion, and Social Justice.

Have there been any issues related to meeting participation/attendance for any of the group’s members?
Yes (if yes, PLA will contact you for more information)

Is there anything PLA could have provided during this time that would have helped your group with its work?
Related to the attendance question, we have lost several members this year due to their library systems no longer funding their PLA memberships. Our task force is unique in that none of our members are librarians, and we are required to join a library professional organization to participate. This has resulted in the task force's group work being focused on an increasingly smaller number of social service professionals who, by the nature of their work in social services, are always taxed, and especially so during the pandemic response.

Submitted by Debra Keane (co-chairs Patrick Lloyd, Tiffany Russel) on 08/19/2021

Committee on Equity, Diversity, Inclusion and Social Justice – April–August 2021 Report


The group met 1 time this reporting period.

Recent Activities

First Activity
Test_ms
Meets PLA’s strategic goals for Advocacy and Awareness

Second Activity
Test_ms
Meets PLA’s strategic goals for Advocacy and Awareness, Equity, Diversity, Inclusion and Social Justice

Third Activity
Test_ms
Meets PLA’s strategic goals for Advocacy and Awareness, Equity, Diversity, Inclusion and Social Justice, Leadership

Fourth Activity
Test_ms
Meets PLA’s strategic goals for Advocacy and Awareness, Equity, Diversity, Inclusion and Social Justice, Leadership, Organizational Excellence

Fifth Activity
Test_ms
Meets PLA’s strategic goals for Advocacy and Awareness, Equity, Diversity, Inclusion and Social Justice, Leadership, Organizational Excellence, Transformation

What will your group be working on for the next six months?
Test_ms

Does the group have any policy recommendations, ideas with financial impact, or other items to bring to the PLA Board for discussion or action
Test_ms

Do you have any suggestions for future products or resources (excluding conference programs) to be developed based on your group’s work?
Test_ms

Are there other PLA/ALA committees your group might collaborate with to benefit the work of all?
Test_ms

Have there been any issues related to meeting participation/attendance for any of the group’s members?
No

Is there anything PLA could have provided during this time that would have helped your group with its work?
Test_ms

Submitted by Test_ms on 08/16/2021

Web Content Working Group – April–August 2021 Report


The group met 0 times this reporting period.

Recent Activities

First Activity
This first activity is only a test to make sure the form is still working after the WordPress site was migrated to a new host.
Meets PLA’s strategic goals for Advocacy and Awareness

Second Activity
This second activity is only a test to make sure the form is still working after the WordPress site was migrated to a new host.
Meets PLA’s strategic goals for Equity, Diversity, Inclusion and Social Justice

Third Activity
This third is only a test to make sure the form is still working after the WordPress site was migrated to a new host.
Meets PLA’s strategic goals for Leadership

Fourth Activity
This fourth is only a test to make sure the form is still working after the WordPress site was migrated to a new host.
Meets PLA’s strategic goals for Organizational Excellence

Fifth Activity
This fifth is only a test to make sure the form is still working after the WordPress site was migrated to a new host.
Meets PLA’s strategic goals for Transformation

What will your group be working on for the next six months?
This is only a test to make sure the form is still working after the WordPress site was migrated to a new host, so this will be provided later.

Does the group have any policy recommendations, ideas with financial impact, or other items to bring to the PLA Board for discussion or action
This is only a test to make sure the form is still working after the WordPress site was migrated to a new host, so it does not have any recommendations, ideas, or other items at this time.

Do you have any suggestions for future products or resources (excluding conference programs) to be developed based on your group’s work?
This is only a test to make sure the form is still working after the WordPress site was migrated to a new host, so we don't have any suggestions at this time.

Are there other PLA/ALA committees your group might collaborate with to benefit the work of all?
This is only a test to make sure the form is still working after the WordPress site was migrated to a new host, so collaborations will come later.

Have there been any issues related to meeting participation/attendance for any of the group’s members?
No

Is there anything PLA could have provided during this time that would have helped your group with its work?
This is only a test to make sure the form is still working after the WordPress site was migrated to a new host, so not at this time.

Submitted by Steven Hofmann Test on 08/12/2021