Leading Learning Goes International

Leading Learning: Standards of Practice for School Library Learning Commons in Canada (Canadian Library Association, 2014) is receiving national and international recognition.

Impact Across Canada


Leading Learning is making a difference across Canada.

On the national level, a presentation on Leading Learning was very well received at the Canadian Library Association (CLA) conference held in Ottawa early in June. One feature of the presentation was looking at the impact of Leading Learning across the country on the first anniversary of its publication. From the development of online professional learning modules in Alberta and Quebec to the program evaluation based on Leading Learning in a large Ontario school district, it is clear that the document’s learning and growth framework has struck a meaningful chord.

International Exposure


Leading Learning was introduced at the IASL Conference in Maastricht, The Netherlands.

Dr. Dianne Oberg of the University of Alberta has taken extraordinary leadership in introducing Canada’s new standards internationally, first at the International Association of School Librarianship (IASL) United States regional conference, held this past April in Texas.

Dr. Oberg also presented a paper written by Carol Koechlin (Leading Learning Writing Coordinator) and Anita Brooks Kirkland at the IASL’s international conference, held in Maastricht, The Netherlands at the end of June. The paper explains Leading Learning‘s unique approach to program assessment, describes the broad collaborative process of its creation, discusses the many ways the standards can be used, and outlines its impact in the year since publication.

The IASL paper, Collaborative Leadership in School Library Learning Commons: New Canadian Standards and New Possibilities and the associated presentation are available on this website.

International Publications

LLarticleTLCarol Koechlin and I had an article about Leading Learning published in the June 2015 edition of the influential American publication, Teacher Librarian. The article describes the potential for Leading Learning to be a catalyst for change, not only in Canada but internationally. Specifically, the guidelines can be used as:

  • an implementation guide for transition to a school library learning commons
  • a measurement tool and framework for growth
  • a framework for professional development
  • a support for teacher-led action research

Leading Learning’s Project Coordinator, Judith Sykes has been working with Carol Koechlin in bringing international attention to Canada’s new guidelines, first with an article in Australia’s School Library Association of Victoria journal, Synergy. The article, Canadian School Libraries Leading Learning, is now available in Synergy’s online edition.


Published by Walter de Gruyter GmbH, Berlin/Boston.

Perhaps the most exciting news is that Leading Learning has been featured in the International Federation of Library Association’s (IFLA) brand new publication, Global Action on School Library Guidelines, edited by Barbara Schultz-Jones of the University of North Texas and our own Dianne Oberg. The chapter, Developing National Standards for School Libraries in Canada, was written by Judith Sykes and Carol Koechlin.

With its unique approach, helping schools define success by impact on learning and providing an achievable framework for making that happen, the enthusiastic reception that Leading Learning is receiving on the international stage is gratifying, but not surprising!

Judith Sykes and Carol Koechlin are gathering the evidence of this impact on the Leading Learning project’s online workspace. The resources they have gathered (and the links in this post) may be useful to you as you implement Leading Learning. And Judith and Carol would love to hear your accounts of how you are using Leading Learning at your school or in your jurisdiction, especially in this Year of the Learning Commons!

Download a copy of Leading Learning and its bibliography at: http://clatoolbox.ca/casl/slic/llsop.html

Purchase print copies from the OLA Store.

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