use the library catalogue or a table of contents. She directs the choice of books for pupils eager
for sympathetic guidance and attention" (p. 362).
While American school libraries first materialized in the 1800s, most notably in New
England (McCarthy, 2006), but also in New York and Michigan (Cecil & Heaps, 1940), growth
of school libraries gained speed with the 1918 publication of Standard Library Organization and
Equipment for Secondary Schools of Different Sizes, written by a committee chaired by Certain
and subsequently endorsed and published by the American Library Association (ALA) in 1920
(Gann, 1998). While these standards are largely concerned with physical requirements and
resources for school libraries, including collections, physical space and equipment, budgets, and
oversight, this document also describes the instructional role of the librarian. The standards state
emphatically that the librarian is not a clerk but a professional who "should have the ability to
work for and with teachers (American Library Association [ALA], 1920, p.12). This document
envisions the library as "the very heart of the high school" (p.4) in the achievement of both
academic and social goals. Standards for staffing include a librarian with an undergraduate
degree and at least one year of graduate work in library science, a year's work with young adults,
and experience as a high school teacher desirable, although not required, with salary equal to that
of a department chairperson (ALA, 1920, p. 18). From very early on, then, the school library
community has stressed the importance of the school library program's role in academic
achievement and insisted upon professional qualifications of staff in pursuit of that achievement.
Shortly after publication of the secondary school standards, regional accreditation bodies
began to require that secondary schools have libraries with trained librarians in order to be
accredited, which prompted further growth of school libraries in the nation's secondary schools
(Woolls, 2005). A similar set of standards was developed for elementary schools. Certain again
Achterman, Douglas L. Haves, Halves, and Have-Nots: School Libraries and Student Achievement in California. Denton, Texas. UNT Digital Library. http://digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc9800/. Accessed September 20, 2014.