November Legislator Outreach
Check out November's edition of our monthly outreach to Michigan Legislators where we continue to educate them on the value of our libraries and the critical role of library staff. Our monthly letters include information on programs and services that libraries provide, education on library funding, the return on investment for our communities, stats and fun facts about library usage and more.
Did you know that only 8% of Michigan’s students have access to a full-time certified school librarian which ranks Michigan at 47th in the nation in the ratio of students to school librarians? 
Did you know that the percentage of students with access to full-time school librarians remains low with approximately 65% of Michigan’s schools reporting no staff in their school library?
Did you know that Michigan 4th graders' reading scores of proficient or above are boosted 35% when a school employs a full-time school librarian?
Studies confirm that certified school librarians positively affect student achievement and information literacy skills. Students who are economically disadvantaged, Black, Hispanic, or have disabilities benefit proportionally more from the presence of a full-time certified school librarian.
Students from schools with certified school librarians have higher reading scores, higher graduation rates, higher ACT scores, and better information literacy (research) skills. Effective school libraries staffed with certified school librarians support: 

  • Equitable access to diverse print and electronic resources
  • Achievement of all students (especially reading achievement)
  • Technology Integration
  • Career and College Readiness by teaching research, information literacy, and digital citizenship skills
Certified school librarians directly impact the achievement of Michigan’s Literacy Plan. Michigan’s Read by Grade Three Law makes it imperative that Michigan’s students receive equitable access to resources to help them with reading achievement. 
We know that all Michiganders support equitable access for our students, and part of that access is to support effective school libraries staffed by certified school librarians. There are currently three bills (HB4392, HB4393 and HB4394) that have been introduced in the Michigan House of Representatives that will make sure no child is without access to a school library or a certified school librarian.

We ask you to look at these bills carefully and support them. They were introduced to make sure children who attend Michigan public schools have every tool in the toolbox to achieve success.

Deborah E. Mikula
Executive Director
Michigan Library Association