Minimum National School Library Standards across Queensland

Eligibility - Queensland residents
Principal Petitioner:
Deborah Robins
17 Cheviot Street
Total Signatures - 2,184
Sponsoring Member: The Clerk of the Parliament
Posting Date: 16/12/2020
Closing Date: 18/4/2021
Tabled Date: 20/4/2021
Responded By: Hon Grace Grace MP on 20/5/2021
TO: The Honourable the Speaker and Members of the Legislative Assembly of Queensland

Queensland residents draws to the attention of the House the systemic dismantling of state school libraries, in large part due to the ongoing reduction of qualified library staff, particularly Teacher Librarians.

A Teacher Librarian not only undertakes accountability for school-wide assets, but is uniquely qualified to consolidate academic success through information frameworks, policies and lessons. Yet, a 2018 QSLA survey of over 300 Queensland public schools, showed that almost half do not employ a Teacher Librarian. Ignoring “Recommended Minimum Information Services Staffing Levels: Table 6 Revised" published jointly by the Australian School Library Association and the Australian Library and Information Association, is a travesty.

An adequately funded and professionally staffed school library provides all students (and teachers) with access to

  • expert instruction and assistance from information specialists
  • high quality, credible information to support teaching and learning 24/7
  • safe, comfortable, IT-rich, functional, learning space
  • curated selection of literature to foster the development of self-directed readers

Recent educational research cited by the national Students Need School Libraries campaign demonstrates that a thriving school library has a positive impact on learning in all content areas as well as supporting students' socio-emotional needs at school.

Your petitioners, therefore, request the House to call on the Education Minister to guarantee that every state school in Queensland has access to a well-maintained school library under the stewardship of a professional library team, comprised of (at a minimum): a qualified Teacher librarian and a qualified Library Technician or trained Library Officer.