The Lilead Fellows will meet face-to-face for the fourth and final time for an ALA Annual Pre-Conference. Over the past 16 months, this elite group of school district administrators have grown individually and as a group. They have supported each other and cheered each other on as they all have facilitated lasting change and impact in their districts. Collectively, the Lilead Fellows come from 17 states across the country, representing 2,181 schools (including elementary, middle, and high schools) and approximately 1.5 million students.
The Fellows had their first face-to-face meeting in Chicago in January 2015, just prior to the ALA Midwinter Meeting, where they began what has been an incredible journey. The Fellows spent their time together in Chicago discussing their personal strengths, sharing and comparing their district strengths and challenges, and setting transformational goals to create solutions for some of the pressing issues the Fellows identified as necessary to address in their districts. This first meeting was also the beginning of a powerful community of school library leaders, and of friends.
The Fellow’s second meeting took the form of a 3-day workshop in College Park, MD in July 2015. The Lilead Fellows built upon the transformative work they began in Chicago, working in large and small groups to share ideas and best practices, struggling with how to address challenges and issues, and thinking of new and exciting possibilities for school library programs in their districts and states, as well as across the nation.
The Fellows met for a third time just after the November 2015 AASL Conference in Columbus, OH. The Fellows were able to receive feedback on their work thus far from staff members of SLJ, LJ, and Junior Library Guild after they all presented updates on their projects. They participated in several activities, focusing on using their strengths to achieve outcomes, as well as how to communicate with stakeholders and collaborators.
This June, the Lilead Fellows will meet for the last time as a group, where they will assess their progress and the progress of their peers, and strategize and formulate a plan for the future. The Fellows will be able to demonstrate the power of this group of leaders to stakeholders, and demonstrate their commitment to the program and to each other. We look forward to welcoming this wonderful group together for one final time, knowing that they will all continue to make profound and lasting changes in their their districts and in the field of school librarianship.