News Releases

JUNE 23, 2016

Future Ready Schools® Announces New Project to Help Recognize School Librarians As Leaders in School Transformation


Future Ready Librarians® Highlights Critical Role Librarians Play in Supporting the Future-Ready Goals of Schools and Districts

MCHENRY, IL – Today, Future Ready Schools® (FRS)—led by the Alliance for Excellent Education (the Alliance) in partnership with the U.S. Department of Education—announced Future Ready Librarians®, an expansion of the Future Ready initiative aimed at positioning librarians as leaders in the digital transformation of learning. The Future Ready initiative helps district leaders recognize the potential of digital tools and align necessary technologies with instructional goals to support teaching and learning.

“In today’s digital world, the school library has evolved from a place to merely check out books to one that offers opportunities for collaboration, project-based learning, and online access,” said Alliance for Excellent Education’s President Bob Wise. “Similarly, librarians are now playing central roles in school leadership and working daily with students, teachers, and administrators. Through Future Ready Librarians, school librarians will be better equipped to support teachers in their transition to a digital learning environment while themselves becoming more future-ready.”

Follett, the largest provider of educational materials and technology solutions to Pre-K–12 schools in the United States, will support the development of tools and resources to connect librarians and libraries in support of the Future Ready initiative and enable district leaders to better engage and empower librarians to support their Future Ready vision.

“Follett is thrilled to support the Future Ready Librarians initiative, as it aligns perfectly with our history and our vision for the future of education,” said Nader Qaimari, President of Follett School Solutions. “Through Project Connect and this initiative, we will continue to advocate for strong, empowered school librarians. Now we can be even more effective as we create new resources and services designed to position librarians as leaders in a digital transformation.”

A network of nationally recognized librarians, including Mark Ray, Chief Digital Officer for Vancouver Public Schools in Washington,will provide input on the development of strategies, tools and resources aligned with the Future Ready Framework. A former high school librarian, Ray has been nationally recognized for transforming the role of the school librarian into a technological innovator in schools.

“Future Ready librarians embrace change and innovation in education,” said Ray. “As teachers, they empower students as creators and digital citizens; as coaches, they collaborate with teachers as curators and guides. Future Ready schools require new kinds of leadership. The Future Ready Librarians initiative will help define what that leadership can be.”

“School librarians lead transformational learning through their instructional leadership in the digital learning landscape,” said Leslie Preddy, president of the American Association of School Librarians, a FRS coalition partner. “They support educators and prepare youth for informed living in a technology- and information-rich society. The expansion of the Future Ready initiative to include Future Ready Librarians re-affirms school librarians as critical to the transition and sustainability of effective digital learning.”

Future Ready Librarians® builds on the Alliance’s 2014 report, Leading In and Beyond the Library, which first outlined the Alliance’s belief that school librarians and libraries should play a key role in state- and district-wide efforts to transition to digital learning. The Alliance has also repeatedly stressed the importance of school librarians through Digital Learning Day, which the Alliance first created in 2012 to highlight great teaching practices and demonstrate how technology can improve student outcomes.

Today’s Future Ready Librarians® announcement comes during the White House’s National Week of Making (June 17–23). The Maker Movement in schools is designed to provide physical spaces within schools where students can collaborate with their peers to build, create, and tinker. These Makerspaces are frequently led by librarians and located within school libraries, which have been reconfigured and redesigned to include workstations where students work on projects involving coding and robots, inquiry-based building, and even 3-D printing.

“With skilled librarians leading the charge, school libraries evolve from quiet reading zones to active, flexible learning spaces for student collaboration and innovation,” said Wise. “Such approaches move students to become designers and creators engaged in real-world applications of their learning who are better prepared for success in college and a career.”

For more information on the Future Ready Librarians® program, visit www.FutureReady.org/Librarians.

Recent News Releases

Follett Aspen Student Information System Partners with MyFlexLearning

September 16, 2021

MCHENRY, Ill., Sept. 16, 2021 — Follett School Solutions and Nash Consulting, LLC, today announced a partnership to integrate the Follett Aspen Student Information System with Nash Consulting’s MyFlexLearning, a flexible scheduling platform. Together, the two systems give schools the benefit of the robust Aspen master scheduler and the ability to provide flexible and personalized daily offerings for students via MyFlexLearning.Officials from both companies explained that many schools are finding they need to schedule individual student periods on a just-in-time basis – more granularly, frequently and flexible than typical class schedules. Aspen provides powerful master scheduling capabilities for schools to...
Read more

Follett Literacy Program Giveaway Provides Students Chance to Win Video Conference Visit with Author Who Inspired International Dot Day

September 15, 2021

MCHENRY, Ill., Sept. 15, 2021 — Children’s author Peter H. Reynolds, who is in the spotlight today with the global celebration of International Dot Day, will soon be participating in a live video conference with one lucky classroom, thanks to the Write to Connect program from Follett School Solutions.Reynolds, author of “The Dot” that serves as the inspiration for International Dot Day, will connect with students whose classroom is randomly selected as the winner of a giveaway open now and running through Sept. 30. Write to Connect, which debuted last year, asks students to send questions to an author about his or her book....
Read more

Francisco Partners Acquires Follett School Solutions

September 1, 2021

WESTCHESTER, Ill., Sept. 1, 2021 —Follett Corporation today announced the sale of Follett School Solutions (FSS), the company’s K-12 software and content division, to Francisco Partners, a leading technology-focused global investment firm.Follett School Solutions, based in McHenry, Ill., is a longtime trusted educational partner to K-12 schools and districts that provides software and content products, including Follett Destiny, FSS’ market-leading library management system with installations in more than 75,000 K-12 schools worldwide. FSS will join Francisco Partners’ growing portfolio of K-12 education-focused businesses and technologies, including Renaissance Learning, Discovery Education, Freckle, myON and Mystery Science.“FSS has played a pivotal leadership role...
Read more

Follett Promotes Linda Semmler to VP of Publisher Relations, Content, and Book Fair Merchandising

August 5, 2021

MCHENRY, IL  - Linda Semmler has been promoted to vice president of publisher relations and content & book fair merchandising for Follett School Solutions, the company announced today. With 25 years of experience, Semmler most recently served as vice president of product & merchandising for Book Fairs and eFairs for Follett.Britten Follett, executive vice president of Follett School Solutions, said Semmler’s role with the company is expanding due to the success she has had driving Follett Book Fairs, which have been growing since debuting nearly four years ago. “Our fairs are so popular with our customers due to the great products Linda...
Read more

Start Reading Now Again Partners with Follett to Help Counter ‘Summer Slide,’ Pandemic Learning Loss

May 27, 2021

Almost 3,000 students from predominantly low-income families will be receiving free print books to read over the summer as the result of a continuing charitable effort led by Start Reading Now.
Read more

Follett Releases MyDestiny — New Digital Classroom Library

April 27, 2021

Literacy solution helps create bridge between library and classroom by delivering eBooks, educator-vetted content to students
Read more

More articles and releases