Elizabeth Linton is in her fourth year as an administrator at Hampstead Elementary School. Hampstead School is recognized by the Moffat family (Global Communications) as one of the neediest schools in Winnipeg and at times Hampstead has found support in the generosity of this organization.
In the first year of her administration, Elizabeth asked the staff to make a wish list. The library’s list was a small request of a set of matching chairs and a bulletin board. The chairs did not come the first year, but the bulletin board did with an extra bit of TLC. Over the weekend Elizabeth went to the school and painted an old bulletin board for the library, so that on Monday the custodian could have it installed. It was truly from the heart.
Ms. Linton shows support for the library program by not only allowing budget requests to enter the queue of requests, which in itself gives the library a certain degree of importance, but she supports the library in many other ways.
First, Ms. Linton works directly with teachers to develop their understanding of the importance of having a vibrant library programs. Second, she clearly demonstrates personal commitment to the program through participation in events and activities of the library. Finally, she uses the role of the administrator to facilitate the current program and to continually develop new programming so her students will have the best chance of meeting the information age head on.
Ms. Linton works with the teachers to ensure they all become engaged in the library program and offer support to the library staff. This clearly shows support for the teacher-librarian position and encourages the teacher-librarian to continually develop and explore the most up to date programs and strategies for the library.
Ms. Linton is always available to meet. She trusts the professional knowledge and expertise of the teacher-librarian, giving consideration to ideas and suggestions; this encourages personal and professional development. In Hampstead Elementary School the library is visibly an important and vital part of the fabric of the school.
Ms. Linton has made a difference in our school and to our library. She has changed the look by allocating funds for new matching chairs and matching tables, and she has committed…very tight budget dollars to purchase new books for our students. As well, she has convinced the maintenance department to replace all the old metal shelving in the library to new modern wooden shelves. Ms. Linton has raised our profile and will make a difference in the lives of our students by supporting the work of libraries and encouraging literacy in our students and by providing resources so we can engage students meaningfully with information that matters to them both in the classroom and the real world.