Evaluation

 This week our class is learning about the library’s monthly and annual reports.  I’ve never put together a report for a library and wasn’t sure what expect.  When I first read the assignment my first thought was, “Boring!”  I think this would be the first thought to go through many people’s minds.  A report is basically nothing more than a description of the goings on whatever is being examined.  In this case the report examines the performance and usage of the library. 

So what can one expect in a library report?  A lot more than what you might expect.  Instead of just a plain systematic report detailing the amount of users of databases, computer lab use, or book checkout, I discovered that reports can be interesting tools of promotion. 

I don’t think there is a set standard for creating a monthly or even an annual report.  Instead, I think the report takes on a life of its own.  It embodies the creativity and uniqueness of the institution it represents.  The report may have statistics, graphs, slide shows, videos, podcasts, and/or student work.  The report is the library’s opportunity to let the administration know just how its programs are benefiting the building.  After looking at several reports I found that I was more drawn to a report with a combination of reporting styles.  However, if the page was too flashy or contained unnecessary wording it lost my attention.  So there has to be a fine balance between entertaining and statistical analysis.  In turn, if the report presented only a graph or an excel sheet of facts I was not able to fully grasp the significance of the programs being presented by the library. 

Such was the case of a library I interviewed on 11 Oct 2010.  The librarians at this particular high school are very nice and they are accommodating each time I visit.  The library they run is beautiful and offers a variety of programs.  Each visit, I’ve seen a room is bustling with activity.  Students are using computers, sitting and doing homework, and browsing the collections of books.  Upon entrance of the room, one can see posters advertising programs and activities.  The library media center offers a great program and the librarians really care about the students.  However, the monthly report does not reflect how much the library positively affects the school.  The report is very systematic, boring. 

Don’t get me wrong, it’s a great reporting system.  Each month the librarians create a report based on student sign-ins and on-line scheduling forms.  The report is handed over to the Media Coordinator who then collects data from all the schools in the district, creates graphs, systematically develops an over all Excel sheet, and turns in an annual report to the principal and school board. 

The report is not on-line for public viewing; however, it is available upon request. 

The monthly report I viewed was well done and easy to understand.  It detailed library usage of each department, whether library time was led by the teacher or the LMS, how many books were circulated, the total amount of computer lab usage, subject assessments tests provided, and collaboration efforts.  I think it is a fine report.  However, it could be spruced up a bit with a few pictures and perhaps a video depicting some of the really neat programs offered by the library.  A few teacher and student comments about the benefits of the library and it’s professionally trained staff would also go a long way to making the report more than just a monthly examination.  It could also be a way to help solidify job security. 

“Annual Report as Advocacy Tool.” KASL. KASL, 10 Apr. 2009. Web. 11 Oct. 2010.

<http://kasl.typepad.com/kasl/2009/04/annual-report-as-advocacy-tool.html>.

Fagan, and Schulz, LMS. Personal Interview. 11 Oct. 2010.

Hamilton, Buffy. “Advocating With More Dimensions to Your Monthly Reports.” The Unquiet Librarian.

Unquiet Librarian, 30 Oct. 2009. Web. 11 Oct. 2010. <http://theunquietlibrarian.wordpress.com/2009/10/30/advocating-with-more-dimension-to-your-monthly-reports/>.

Hamilton, Buffy. “Creekview High School Media Center Monthly Report.” The Unquiet Librarian. Unquiet

Librarian, Mar. 2009. Web. 11 Oct. 2010.  <http://theunquietlibrary.wikispaces.com/file/view/march%202009%20Monthly%20report.pdf>.

Hamilton, Buffy. “The Unquiet Librarian:  The Year in Review 2009-2010.” The Unquiet Librarian.

Animoto, May 2010. Web. 11 Oct. 2010. <http://animoto.com/play/YiJ8WTEzkSi4k2311LG7jQ&gt;.

Harada, Violet and Joan M. Yoshima. “Assessing Learning: The Missing Piece in Instruction.” School

Library Media Activities Monthly 22.7 (2006): Libraries Unlimited. Web. 11 Oct. 2010.

<http://schoollibrarymonthly.com/articles/Harada2006v22n7p20.html>.

Jones, Arla. “Happenings in the Library: Annual Report 2008-09.” Lawrence High School Library, 12 May

2009. Web. 11 Oct. 2010. <http://library.lhs.usd497.org/AnnualReport2008-09.html&gt;.

Valenza, Joyce. “Springfield Township High School Library Annual report—June 2009.” School District of

Spring field Township, June 2009. Web. 11 Oct. 2010. <http://www.sdst.org/shs/library/pdf/annualreport09.pdf>.

Woolls, Blanche. The School Library Media Manager. 4th ed. Westport: Libraries Unlimited,

2008. Print

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s