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  • 20 Dec 2021 9:24 AM | Kristy Sartain (Administrator)

    I do a Goodreads challenge every year by randomly selecting a number of books that I think I can read during the year. I never hit it, but I still read 70-120 books each year. We're librarians. We read, right?

    In 2020, I really thought I would read 100 books. Like, I was CONFIDENT I would read them. And when the pandemic hit, I KNEW I would be able to read that many books. How many did I end up reading? 45. 

    I had pandemic depression. And that made me not take any pleasure in reading. I was stressed about working from home with three other people in the house, all also working or learning from home. I was stressed about the hundreds of e-mails I received from students and teachers about technology not working. I was stressed by the bombardment of e-mails about tech resources and online teaching resources. (This was when I decided to only send one e-mail a week.) I was stressed about cancelling vacations and not seeing my parents. I was stressed about everything. I was even stressed about not being able to read or enjoy reading. It. Was. Bad. 

    I knocked my goal down to 40 in November of 2020 because I was pretty sure I could at least get to that number. I did and I passed it, barely. This year, I set my goal to a doable 90. Not going to hit that, either. In one of my Facebook book groups, someone mentioned how stressful it was to set a reading goal and gradually see yourself fall behind. Many of us replied with Just Change It!. I do. I don't feel bad about that. My current goal is 80, which I changed a few weeks ago. I am at 75 right now, but I am reading three books (okay, one is an audiobook) and I have a couple in queue that I should be able to finish. 

    I don't do reading challenges where you have to read one book of this genre or a book by an author with your initials. Those don't really appeal to me. Mostly because I am a firm believer in reading whatever the heck you want. Make no apologies for the books that bring you pleasure. We encourage our students to read what they enjoy. Make sure to extend yourself the same permission. 

  • 13 Dec 2021 3:05 PM | Kristy Sartain (Administrator)

    Many of us, well, I venture to say most of us, are the only librarian in our school. Many districts even did away with library paraprofessionals. I always joke that my job is "other". I am a teacher, yes. But I'm also the manager of the library space and calendar, the buyer of books, the destroyer of souls. Wait. Too far. I've been reading too many fantasy books. ;-)

    It's so important that we find people to connect with. It's not only for the need to commiserate with others who understand, but also to have work friends outside of work. Being active in your region is a great start to connecting. In Region 4, we started an unofficial group on Facebook and now there are several of us who meet every month on a Saturday for coffee and now we're adding a monthly dinner. This "Coffee and Camaraderie" as we've dubbed it has grown into real friendships. We have each other's phone numbers. We share resources. We are our Librarian Gang. 

    I don't know about y'all, but I have found it harder to make and keep friends as an adult. What better way to solidify friendships than to find others who share in the joys and frustrations of the same career? Each region in NC has an elected director. Reach out to that person and see what opportunities there are to meet and hang out with other librarians in your area. And if you prefer virtual, there's always the NCSLMA Brew Crew. We meet the second Saturday of each month. Watch for the e-mail to sign up for our next one. You can also join the NCSLMA School Librarian Facebook Group. *make sure you answer all the membership questions* It's a private group just for NCSLMA members. 

    It is lonely sometimes. We're all in the same boat and we're all islands. I'm sure there's an extended metaphor there about water and keeping our heads above it.... Who better to understand that loneliness than fellow librarians? We're here for each other and together, we are stronger and better. 

  • 30 Nov 2021 10:54 AM | Kristy Sartain (Administrator)

    The American Library Association put out a statement on November 29, 2021, about book challenges. It can be found here. It references the Freedom to Read statement, which was written in 1953, and can be found here

    Having a strong collection development policy and book challenge policy will help protect school librarians and their book purchasing decisions. ALA provides resources for creating either of those here

    Dr. April Dawkins provided an informative, timely session on book challenges and that information can be found on the Members-Only Advocacy page. We highly recommend you watch it if you haven't already and look over the included resources. 

    If books in your collection have been challenged, please reach out and we will connect you with any available resources we have. Posting in the NCSLMA School Librarians Facebook Group is the fastest way to get an answer, but you can also e-mail Board members. Their information is posted here

  • 21 Nov 2021 8:34 PM | Kristy Sartain (Administrator)

    With Thanksgiving coming up this week, I wanted to take a few minutes and reflect on how thankful I am for NCSLMA. I have been a member off and on for the last ten years and have grown so much professionally, especially in the last few years, thanks to our awesome librarians and their awesome ideas. From conference, to Winter Tune-Up, to Summer Learning Series, and everything in-between, there have been so many opportunities to connect and learn.

    I am grateful that I was given the opportunity to participate in Leadership Academy. I met some of the most amazing librarians! I love how often our paths cross and how we bonded over the pandemic and librarianship. That experience led to my current position in NCSLMA and getting to know even more fabulous librarians. We are all “other” in our schools, but getting to meet and come together makes it a little easier. 

    And finally, I want to thank you. I love being a librarian. But none of it would be nearly as fulfilling as it is without the camaraderie and support that we give to each other. 

    I wish you a safe, happy, relaxing Thanksgiving. 

  • 14 Nov 2021 8:02 AM | Kristy Sartain (Administrator)
    Stay in the loop by reading our monthly newsletter. In it, you will find timely information for librarians by librarians.

    Upcoming this week is a Book Challenge Chat with Dr. April Dawkins. This event is full and has a waitlist, but will be recorded and posted on our Member Landing Page afterwards. 

    We have opened a new store full of great items. Until November 27, all NCSLMA members receive 15% off your entire order. 

    BOB coaches, compliance questions are now in your membership profile. Make sure your membership is paid or renewed on time to avoid any disruptions in your BOB status. 

    Second Chance Conference Registration is now open. Members who pay for Conference have access to all conference videos through September 2022!

    Have a great week and Happy Reading!

  • 7 Oct 2021 9:17 AM | Kristy Sartain (Administrator)

    The NCSLMA Resources Repository is now live! This is a place where you can submit and find lesson plans from librarians all over the state. In addition to lesson plan forums for each level, there is also a Resource Forum where you can submit and find library-specific teaching resources.

    Click here to visit the Repository or click on the links in your login landing page or click Inside NCSLMA and then Resources. 

    This is a collaborative effort and is available only to NCSLMA members. If you're not a member, join today! If you are a member, consider sharing your awesome lesson plans so we can all become better librarians. 

  • 28 Jun 2021 10:05 AM | Kristy Sartain (Administrator)

    Join us for the 2021 Summer Learning Series, hosted by members of the 2021 Leadership Academy. 

    Register at or look for the SLS link under Events on the home page. 

  • 25 Jun 2021 10:34 PM | Kristy Sartain (Administrator)

    Early Bird conference registration is now open for #NCSLMA21! We are excited to come together to Reflect, Refocus, Reconnect, & Rejuvenate Oct. 7-9 in Winston-Salem. Visit the conference website for more info and to register

  • 22 May 2021 8:51 AM | Kristy Sartain (Administrator)

    Join us for a live chat with Kathy Parker on Tuesday, May 25, 2021 from 4:00 PM - 5:00 PM.  

    This event will be via Google Meet.  Registrants will receive the link in their registration confirmation email.

    Please contact Brene Duggins,,  with any questions. 

    Register HERE

  • 3 Apr 2021 10:15 AM | Kristy Sartain (Administrator)

    The 2021 NCSLMA Conference is only half a year away! We are excited for the opportunity to Reflect, Refocus, Reconnect, and Rejuvenate as we come back together at the Benton Convention Center in Winston-Salem for our Oct. 7-9 conference.

    The call to present is now open on the Events section of the NCSLMA website and we are accepting applications for 45-minute concurrent sessions and 90-minute mini-workshops. Mini-workshops might include hands-on, interactive, and/or tech-based sessions. The call to present closes on Friday, May 14.

    The conference website is now live and will be updated regularly with additional information as it becomes available.


NCSLMA is a professional organization dedicated to supporting, promoting, and empowering school librarians across the state as they transform their school communities.


Membership is $50 per year and comes with numerous benefits and professional development opportunities. 
Join or learn more here. 


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We provide various ways to connect with librarians across the state. 
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NCSLMA is a 501(c)6 non-profit organization (2023 W9)

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