Last week, I was fortunate to speak to educational publishers and wholesalers at the Educational Book and Media Association conference in St. Petersburg, Florida. I was on a panel with Kent Oliver, Director of the Nashville Public Library, Dr. Annie Norman, State Librarian of Delaware and the panel was moderated by Rebecca Miller, Editorial Director of Library Journal and School Library Journal.
The topic of our panel was Public Schools and Public Libraries: the logistics of partnerships. DCPL was asked to be on the panel because of the partnership we’ve been working on with DC Public Schools for the past couple of years. It’s still pretty much a baby project and we’ve had some bumps along the way. That’s probably why I was asked to lead the challenges section of the panel.
I hope the participants found our panel helpful. I certainly learned quite a bit about the world of educational publishing. I learned that they are passionate about educational books and helping kids learn and grow but they know next to nothing about public libraries. They don’t know our funding structure, how we operate, or how we make decisions. I’m glad EBMA brought us in because as schools start to work with public libraries more and more, educational publishers will discover that we do things very differently than schools. I hope this opened the door for these conversations.