What!? Did she just say, "free insurance for members?"

Yes! SCASL has teamed up with American Income Life insurance company to offer some insurance coverage for all active members.

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Please visit the pages below for information on our 2015 SCASL Conference Pre-Con sessions, tours and meals:

Pre-Con Sessions:

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The SCASL Information Technology Committee is sponsoring a contest for all members who use our website! Each month (September through February) the names of the 5 most active users of the SCASL website will be entered into a drawing. At conference, we will draw 1 winner who will receive a $25 Amazon gift card! The more you log in and use the website, the better your chances are of winning. And, of course, the more you use the website, the more useful information and ideas you'll find!

Fine print:
The top 5 active users will be determined by actual use of forums, circles, etc and not just by number of logins. By the time of the drawing, there will be 30 names entered. Names may be entered into the drawing multiple times for different months if the member is consistently active on the website; therefore the more active you are for a long period of time, the better your chance of winning! Contact Heather Thore at [email protected] if you have questions about the contest or website.

The SCASL Elections committee is seeking nominations for the 2015– 2016 Slate of Officers (President Elect and Secretary) and three Election Committee Member-at-Large positions. Elections will be held during the March 2015 SCASL Annual Business Meeting at the conference in Columbia. Nominees must reside and/or work in South Carolina and be members of SCASL.

President Elect:
The President Elect is a three-year commitment and requires previous Board of Directors service. Personal membership in ALA and AASL for the duration of your service as an officer is also required.
Year One Duties (President Elect):
•Plans the SCASL 2016 Annual Conference and selects the major speakers for the 2017 conference.
•SCASL sends you to ALA Annual (June 25-June 30, 2015) in San Francisco, CA to observe the AASL Affiliate Assembly and scout for conference speakers, authors, and vendors.
•SCASL sends you to AASL Conference (October 15-18, 2015) in Columbus, OH to scout for speakers, authors, and vendors.
•SCASL sends you to ALA Midwinter Meeting (January 8-12, 2016) in Boston, MA to represent SCASL at the AASL Affiliate Assembly.
•SCASL sends you to ALA Annual (June 23-June 28, 2016) in Orlando, FL to observe the AASL Affiliate Assembly and scout for conference speakers, authors, and vendors.

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There has been a discussion/thread recently regarding how to limit YA books found in a library with mixed levels. The desire is to make sure elementary students are not checking out mature content.  Many suggestions have been shared:

  • Create a YA shelf that is designated as a certain grade level only (example: 8th grade only)
  • Create a form letter and get lower grade students to return a form that lets parents specifically give permission for access to mature fiction content like YA books
  • Create a form and require parents to opt out at the beginning of the school year.

All of these are suitable response and effective ways to deal with the topic at hand. But did you know that most circulation systems allow a librarian to set up these kinds of restrictions?  How is this done.  

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As we head into another school year, it is time to review the SCASL-LS Discussion List Guidelines. If you are a new or returning member of this list-serv, please take a few minutes to remind yourself of the guidelines. Remember to NEVER share passwords on the list-serv (including DISCUS).


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Author of Reality Is BrokenWhy Games Make Us Better and How They Can Change the World, Jane McGonigal, gave an excellent presentation at ALA's opening session. Here are some interesting tidbits from her talk:


-We play a lot of games. 
-Games are engaging.
- Work and school is not engaging for a large number of people.
- The longer we stay in school the less engaged we become as we go from elementary to high school.
- Ten positive emotions- creativity, contentment awe & wonder, excitement, curiosity, pride, surprise, love, relief, joy
-No matter what is going on the gamer feels these positive emotions
-Engagement in life equals positive emotions which translate to an upward spiral of other positive things 
-Gamers spend 80% of time failing
-"The opposite of play isn't work, it's depression" Brian Sutton-Smith 
-Game play encourages optimism, Competence, Physiological energy
-Game play is the opposite of depression neurologically
-Scans show game play is opposite of neurological depression. 
-Every game gives a goal clearly
-Gaming develops Resilience as gamers are less likely to quit after failure
-There is no such thing as an educational or non educational game. They are ALL educational.
-Games treat depression better than Meds, foldit, eyewire, block by block, minecraft, Ora saves the forest, Whale song project whale fm, Valley of heroes created by Jane McGonigal   
-Goals are more possible when fueled by positive emotions

"It was libraries that provided me sanctuary and solace."

She volunteered working in the library gluing bindings. "I love the dewey decimal system."

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Be our hero and save the date for the 40th Annual SCASL Conference! 

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Look! Up in the sky! It's a bird! It's a plane! It's YOU presenting at
The 40th Annual SCASL Conference March 11-13, 2015 at the Columbia Metropolitan Convention Center.

Applications to present are due September 1, 2014. Click here for the application.

Contact Jennifer Tazerouti at [email protected] for more information.

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The April 2014 issue of the Media Center Messenger is online NOW!

Click here to Log in and read about:

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Michelle Bates, SCASL member and School Librarian at Northside Middle (Greenwood 50) shares this Prezi as a way to introduce the 2014-2015 SC Junior Book Award Nominees.  Enjoy!  


The 2013-2014 SC Young Adult Book Award Committee used this video to introduce and highlight the 2014-2015 SC Young Adult Award Nominees. Enjoy!! This video was created by SCYABA 2013-14 Chair Melanie Dillard, School Librarian from Dorman High School in spartanburg District 6. This video can be downloaded from Flickr or Edmodo.  Edmodo codes are available in the Forums area set up for the 2014 SCASL Conference.

The 2013-2014 SC Children's Book Award Committee used this video to introduce and highlight the 2014-2015 SC Children's Book Award Nominees. Enjoy!! This video can be downloaded from Flickr or Edmodo.  Edmodo codes are available in the Forums area set up for the 2014 SCASL Conference.


Have you seen this video making rounds?  

"Principals Know: School Librarians are the Heart of the School" was crowdsourced by Dr. Judi Moreillon and Dr. Teresa Starrett using funds provided by the Texas Library Association, Demco, and the Dean's Research Funds (College of Professional Education, Texas Woman's University).If you are a principal or school administrator and you want to share why your school librarian is the heart of your school, contact Dr. Judi Moreillon ([email protected]).

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Congratulations to the following district where 100% of working school librarians are current members of SCASL. These members enjoyed recognition at conference and preferential seating at the Book Awards Day Luncheon at Conference. 

Distinguished Service Award Winner-Connie Dopierala

During the 39th Annual SCASL Conference, Award recipients were honored at the Thursday, March 13, 2014 Awards Banquet. SCASL’s highest award is the Distinguished Service Award. This award is intentionally kept secret from the recipient. It recognizes an individual or an organization for contributions to SCASL and school media programs throughout the state of South Carolina. She is a 25+ year teaching veteran.Camellia Harris, who nominated our recipient, says she has served the faculty, staff, and students of the Charleston County School District and the state of South Carolina over her seven years tenure with her whole heart and with an extraordinary vision. She has urged the Charleston County teacher librarians, who she refers to as her Library Ninjas, to be more and do more in each of their schools.Throughout the years she has sustained her one true goal to meet the needs of all students so that they will become good citizens who think for themselves, are media literate, love to read, and are life-long learners.” Having served in Charleston County School District as their Media Services administrator, she is now enjoying a well-deserved retirement as of January of this year.  Our Distinguished Service Award for 2014-2015 is presented to Connie Dopierala.  

The Margaret Ehrhardt Student Scholarship provides a scholarship to a graduating media center volunteer who has made an outstanding contribution to South Carolina school librarianship, school library services, and/or SCASL.

He is the son of a renaissance man and an English teacher who answered the call to be a library media specialist, both of whom taught their only son self-sufficiency and a love of education. His thirst for knowledge was fed by volunteering in the library from elementary school through high school and was ultimately his springboard to numerous high school activities. His Colleton County High School media specialist, Lynne Douglas Simmons, calls him a “dream library assistant.”  Leon Williams is SCASL’s Margaret Ehrhardt Student Scholarship Award recipient for 2014-2015.

During the 39th Annual SCASLConference, Award recipients were honored at the Thursday, March 13, 2014 Awards Banquet. Over the next week or so we will highlight our award winners. Congratulations to Melissa Keefer the 2014 recipient of the SCASL sponsored Nancy Day Scholarship. Melissa Keefer is a current  MLIS candidate at the University of South Carolina, pursuing a career in school librarianship. She is a former Exceptional Children’s teacher and 2009 alumna of the University of North Carolina at Charlotte’s Special Education program. Melissa lives in Fort Mill, South Carolina with her husband and children