The overarching goal of The Lilead Project (rhymes with Iliad) is to study, support, and build community among school district library supervisors—those individuals that coordinate a school district’s library programs. Led by Dr. Ann Carlson Weeks, the project looks at the many facets of the supervisor’s role, they ways in which we can support them, and opportunities to help these individuals connect with one another.
Lilead represents work conducted in two major areas:
- The Lilead Survey: a survey of district library supervisors and the subsequent analysis that forms an account of their role and the challenges they face.
- The Lilead Fellows Program: a long-term professional development opportunity for a small group of selected library supervisors. This program was conducted over 18 months and included an intensive Summer Institute in the Summer of 2015, supervisors working in groups and with mentors on real-world problems, and coordinated work at ALA and AASL conferences. A 2016 IMLS grant will support the continuation and expansion of the Fellows Program.
- The Lilead Leaders Program: short 6- to 8-week courses for any school library leader.
The impetus behind this work stems from the little documentation and data surrounding the district library supervisor. No national, comprehensive study of the roles, responsibilities, demographics, or contributions of the district library supervisor has been conducted since the late 1960s. Yet, the library supervisor is often the only voice at the administrative level to advocate for the value of library programs and push for equitable budgets and staffing. It is the hope that the information collected in this study will help school library media programs carry out their missions.