Libraries for Lifelong Learning in Queensland: Towards the Smart State

By Blumson, Liz | Australasian Public Libraries and Information Services, March 2003 | Go to article overview

Libraries for Lifelong Learning in Queensland: Towards the Smart State


Blumson, Liz, Australasian Public Libraries and Information Services


School, public and tertiary libraries share many goals and a vision of students as information literate, information enabled and independent lifelong learners. Teachers, teacher librarians and public librarians are particularly well placed in their communities to work with each other to provide comprehensive information services for young people. When working in collaboration, their information and support services can be coordinated and complementary. Cooperative and innovative developments in Queensland are described

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Building the technology rich and information rich learning environments that will prepare students for active citizenship in a learning society requires extensive information systems within and between schools and across communities.

   The richness of the school's information
   services will influence and may even determine
   whether or not teachers and students are
   empowered to be independent learners both
   today and for the rest of their lives. (1)

School, public and tertiary libraries share many goals and a vision of students as information literate, independent lifelong learners. Teachers, teacher librarians and public librarians are particularly well placed in their communities to work with each other to provide comprehensive information services for young people. When working in collaboration, their information and support services can be coordinated and complementary. In addition, in Queensland, Education Queensland offers systemic information services and resources through AccessEd Library Services.

Across Queensland innovative projects are underway where school libraries are forming partnerships with systemic, public and university libraries to create networked learning communities and extend the range of information services and resources available to students and teachers.

Brisbane City Council Library Services and Summer reading

The Brisbane City Council launched in 2002 an exciting initiative working with schools in the metropolitan area to promote independent reading outside of school. Primary school principals were invited to encourage their students to become public library members and participate in the summer reading program to be conducted in public libraries across the city during December 2002 and January 2003. Offered in partnership with Queensland Museum, the summer reading program provided incentives and rewards for reading, sharing reading ideas with others and attending free activities in the libraries and museum such as internet treasure hunts, storytelling, interactive drama and meet the author or illustrator. The four schools that encouraged the highest percentage of their enrolment to participate in the program were given a pc.

Mt Isa district union catalogue

In 2001 the Mount Isa and District Teacher Librarian network produced a union catalogue on cdrom. Included in the catalogue are the collections of the Mt Isa City Council Library and eleven primary and secondary schools in the city. The catalogue allows librarians and teacher librarians to share the wealth of resources held in their collections for the benefit of their collective users and enables savings because the Mount Isa and District Teacher Librarian Network has a free daily district mail bag. Teachers are able to develop bibliographies, pathfinders and units of work based on available local resources and students are able to plan their information searches and choices. This project has given all district stakeholders the opportunity to become lifelong learners within a knowledge sharing community.

Townsville and Thuringowa City Libraries--working hand in hand with schools

Townsville and Thuringowa public libraries and district schools have a well developed program of cooperation. Public librarians and teacher librarians attend regular meetings of the North Queensland Teacher Librarian network and share ideas through a listserve that has grown to include teacher librarians in other areas such as Charters Towers and Bowen.

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Libraries for Lifelong Learning in Queensland: Towards the Smart State
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