Teacher-Librarians – the heartbeat of our schools!


​​Te​acher-Librarian at Xavier Catholic College Graham Bebington has been inspiring and transforming student's learning journey's at the College for 10 years.

For many of us, one of our fondest memories of learning was strolling down the inspiring isles in our school library filled with towers of books.  

A vibrant source of learning, libraries play a central role in the growth of young people, stimulating creativity and developing skills that will set children up for the future.  

This week BCE schools and colleges joined to celebrate Queensland School Library Week, following the theme of ‘at the Heart of Learning’.  
And if school libraries are at ‘the Heart of Learning’, then it’s our Teacher-Librarians and library staff who provide the beat.  

Teacher-Librarian for 10 years at Xavier Catholic College in Hervey Bay Graham Bebington saidas a Teacher-Librarian, I am driven to ensure every child that enters our library will leave feeling inspired and motivated to either read, interact with literature in a new and unique manner or be willing to explore their creative minds”. 

“A library is the one place in a school that truly beats to the rhythm of the heart of learning. A Teacher-Librarian breathes this life every day by guiding and nurturing a deep and sincere love for learning,” Graham said.   

As qualified teacher who has completed additional studies and experience, Teacher-Librarians collaborate with all staff, students, and teachers to promote a positive learning culture.  

“A Teacher-Librarian is more than just a curriculum leader, they are action takes who display the curriculum through their pedagogy and in their ability to teach, inspire and transform,” Graham said.    

In our library space, students must firstly feel accepted for who they are. They will not be judged or labelled. Students will also be happy. If they are unhappy, no learning will take place. 

Graham says a school library is not defined by its walls, but by its ability to reach into the lives of library users.  

“It’s also a physical place of proactive learning, and libraries must be inclusive and accepting of everyone in our school communities.” 
With the ever-evolving information and educational landscapes, Brisbane Catholic Education continues to proactively reimagine how library services, programs and spaces enhance the whole learning community.  

Teacher-Librarian at St Agnes Primary School in Mt Gravatt, Donna Lechte, says as the information landscape continues to change and evolve, so too do our libraries.  

“While libraries continue to provide a physical space for students to collaborate and innovate, as well as physical resources, they are increasingly providing access to a growing number of digital resources to support learning,” Donna said.  

“The disruptions to learning that have taken place over the past two years due to COVID have highlighted how important it is for libraries to have a strong digital collection with a user-friendly interface.” 

“School libraries have evolved beyond being a physical space to house books. They include both physical and digital collections which are developed and managed based on the unique requirements of their learning community.”  

Completing a Master of Education – Teacher Librarianship in 2021, Donna said the role of a Teacher-Librarian can look slightly different at every school, depending on their area of specialty.  

At St Agnes, Donna’s role also includes delivering the Media Arts curriculum that teaches students how to locate, evaluate and use information in a responsible and ethical manner.  

“Librarians work as information specialists, helping students to locate the information they are looking for. They help students to learn how to be digitally literate, including how to navigate digital platforms and responsibly communicate through them. And while we have these evolving and exciting technological advancements, for some students, libraries remain as they always have been, a physical space in which they discover quality literature and develop a deep love of reading and learning.” 

“Even in 2022, where we have access to information at the click of a button, libraries continue to play an integral role in helping students connect with information, be that through physical or digital resources, and to make sense of that information in a meaningful way.”  

Graham said the library of tomorrow should already be visible today and willing to explore the unknown.  

“A library is always looking at future technologies and embracing change. Our spaces are adapting to meet the needs of an ever-changing learning environment.” 

Queensland School Library Week is organised by the Queensland School Library Association ​​​and has been held since 2018. 
For further information regarding Queensland School Library Week and the primary and secondary school competitions, visit www.qsla.org.au. 

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