Public Library Sector ( Zenon Zuzak, Isabelle Butters)
Regina Public Library and Saskatoon Public Library are developing a partnership by working towards a common software platform, though only at the conceptual stage now. Saskatoon Public Library is setting up public meetings on the opening of a new neighbourhood branch in the Pleasant Hill/Riversdale area.
Saskatchewan Aboriginal Storytelling Week from Feb. 5 to 9 was a great success. Nearly 800 people participated in the Saskatchewan Storytelling Week at branches of the Saskatoon Public Library. The week began with a provincial launch featuring provincial and municipal dignitaries as well as some of the week's performers and presenters. Enthusiastic audiences of all ages enjoyed stories in drama, song, dance and oral tradition. Curtis Peeteetuce, the Library's Writer in Residence, planned and emceed all of the programs and did the Library proud.
School Libraries (Lois Smandych, Barb McNeil)
The February 2 SSBA meeting reviewed the new regulations to the Education Act , Clause 37(5) pertaining to the responsibility for boards of education to provide school library services. Policies and standards governing school libraries were discussed.
The purpose of the meeting was to discuss the new Regulations and decide how this information will be shared with school board trustees and school board divisions.
The school reference committee is in the process of developing a new provincial policy on school libraries. A draft will be ready for the March 8-9 th meeting.
Lois really enjoyed working on the Multitype Library Board and wishes the Board continued success.
Post Secondary Sector (Heather West, Rian Misfeldt)
It appears that Apple is making inroads with Library and Learning Commons computing. Many post-secondary libraries have equipped their spaces with at least a few Macintosh computers. One U.S. education institution (Wilkes) is now equipping their entire campus solely with Macs. Both University of Saskatchewan Library and SIAST Libraries have Macintosh computers already at their facilities.
The trend toward having laptop computers available for borrowing continues at post-secondary libraries.
Post-secondary libraries are still focusing on the facility “space” as they upgrade furniture, relax food and drink rules, and even look at extended service hours.
Lastly, during the past year there has been an increasing focus on harnessing social networking sites (i.e. Web 2.0 technologies) to reach students and integrate into the institution’s community. Expect more development in this area as post-secondary libraries continue to "go" where the students are on the web .
Archives (Mark Vajčner )
The Saskatchewan Council for Archives and Archivists (SCAA) is currently looking for a new Executive Director/Archives Advisor. This is a new position replacing the old Outreach Archivist position and will have more responsibility for day-to-day management of the SCAA.
Archives Week 2007 was held February 5 to 11. The week was a coordinated effort by archives across the province to increase awareness of archival resources.
Winnipeg conservator Jane Dalley led a workshop on emergency preparedness. Held in Saskatoon March 9 and 10, the workshop was designed to assist participants in identifying potential disasters in their institutions, and in developing a plan and procedures to reduce risk, respond, recover and resume operations.
Saskatchewan Library Association (Julie McKenna)
Saskatchewan Library Week Planning Committee - An invitation for a representative from MLB to this committee is extended.
Saskatchewan Bursary - The SLA Board made a decision to move $1000 from the past fiscal year's surplus to the bursary fund. Fundraising targets have been set for the bursary for the coming year. A decision was made to commit a percentage from the conference surplus every year towards the bursary.
Saskatchewan Libraries Conference - It is noted that both the Literacy for Life Conference in Saskatoon (2nd annual conference of Saskatoon Schools to be held April 30-May 3) and the Saskatchewan School Libraries conference will be held in Saskatoon at the beginning of the week of the SLA conference.
Promotion has been undertaken to raise awareness about the Digitization Workshop, Database Training Workshop and the MLB session on "Building Positive Relationships for Literacy".
There is the possibility of a joint conference May 1-3, 2008 with the Manitoba Library Association in Regina at the Queensbury Downs. This had not yet been ratified by the SLA Board at the time of the MLB meeting.
Special Libraries (Joan Martin, Mary Chipanshi)
The Special Library group in Saskatoon is still meeting on a regular basis and using the SLN-L listserv for communication purposes. In November, Heather Acton, Library Manager at Robertson, Stromber, Pederson demonstrated blog aggregator software and instructed the group on using a blogging tool as an Intranet. Recently, the group discussed best practices with regard to donation policies. Angela Battiste, Information Specialist at Saskatchewan Environment/Saskatchewan Forest Centre presented a case study.
Public Perspective (Bev Siebert)
At their February 2007 convention, the Saskatchewan Urban Municipalities Association (SUMA) passed two resolutions related to libraries. SUMA is requesting increased provincial government funding for libraries (regional libraries). They are also calling for changes to the Public Libraries Act that would allow for more municipal input and control over the operation of library branches.
Saskatchewan Association of Rural Municipalities ( SARM) has a resolution to be voted on at their convention March 15-16, 2007 that states:
"Therefore be it resolved that SARM lobby that Provincial Government to amend the legislation so that participation in a regional library is voluntary, not compulsory." [This resolution was defeated.]
Below is a quote from a letter by Kenneth Sutherland, Chairperson, Southeast library board:
"Southeast Regional Library has just completed a random telephone survey of rural residents in our service area as part of a region wide survey process. Most of the responses are accurate to plus or minus 5 percentage points 95 times out of 100. The responses of those who expressed an opinion illustrate the high regard for public libraries among rural residents. Over 92% of the rural citizens in southeastern Saskatchewan who were surveyed believe the public library use their money well; and 56% believe that taxes should be increased to cover necessary library costs. Just over 99% of survey respondents agreed that a public library is essential for maintaining a productive community and over 79% indicated that something essential and important would be lost should public libraries disappear. Clearly the residents of the rural areas of southeastern Saskatchewan are firmly committed to the regional library system even if the municipal politicians are raising questions about its continued viability."
Regional Libraries have successfully found non-library grant programs at both the provincial and federal level to assist in some of the costs in operating local branches thereby reducing the cost pressures on local municipalities. These grant programs have run their course and we have not as yet found new funding sources. We [library boards] have asked our municipalities to help us in finding additional funding to replace these funding sources and to lobby governments to make additional funds available. It would be inaccurate and misleading to say that provincial and Federal Governments are "withdrawing grant funding."
Library Services for Saskatchewan Aboriginal People (LSSAP) ( Phyllis Lerat)
Aboriginal Storytelling Week took place at 93 sites around the province and had more participants than past years. The final numbers have not yet been tallied.
LSSAP will be attending the 5th International Indigenous Library Forum (IILF) in Brisbane Australia, May 31 to June 8, 2007. The Panel Presentation will include a PowerPoint Presentation. LSSAP is working on promotional items , including a brochure and logo, and a group photo. They are formatting the forum proceedings for the 4 th IILF.
LSSAP has two upcoming pre-conference sessions. The first, in partnership with Awâsis, is called "Portrayal of Native Americans in Literature for Children" (April 26, 2007 at the Saskatoon Inn). The second pre-conference session, “Meeting at the River - Sharing Indigenous Knowledge” will be held in conjunction with the Saskatchewan Libraries Conference, on May 03, 2007 at the Saskatoon Inn.
Current fundraising activities include a steak night, raffle and a calendar. Future Initiatives include a monograph for library services.
Provincial Library (Joylene Campbell)