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Staff Highlight: Henry Stokes

2017 November 21
by Kyla Hunt

As part of our effort to make sure you know who the staff here at the Texas State Library are, we would like to periodically highlight staff members that you may at some point come in contact with! For our latest staff highlight, I interviewed Henry Stokes, one of Library Development and Networking’s Library Technology Consultants.

What are your job responsibilities at TSLAC?
As a library technology consultant, I provide training and consulting for library staff across the state with a focus on emerging technology trends and broadband connectivity.  I manage our Ploud program (“Public Libraries in the Cloud) which provides free websites for 200 libraries in Texas.  I’m also State E-rate Coordinator, supporting our state’s library applicants with the E-rate telecommunications discount program. This year I’m very excited about a brand new program that I’ll be in charge of – “Libraries Connecting Texas”, which provides 2 years of free E-rate coaching help plus subsidy funding so that libraries can get a whole year of an Internet upgrade entirely for free.

Henry StokesWhat project have you been the most proud of during your time at TSLAC?
I loved getting to help launch our “You Can Do I.T.” technology training series for small rural public libraries.  I created  I.T. Heidi, the YCDIT mascot, who is based on World War II’s Rosie the Riveter. For fun, I created an action figure of her so that my fellow library technology consultant Cindy Fisher could take pictures posing with it on the road (like a garden gnome).

What was the last book your read/movie you watched/podcast or song you listened to that you enjoyed?
Borne by Jeff VanderMeer. It’s a somber science-fiction survival story featuring weird biotech and a giant flying bear. Coming to theaters in February, look for a movie adaptation of another of the same author’s novels, Annihilation, which I liked even better than Borne.

What is something about you that people don’t know?
Whenever anyone asked me as a child what I wanted to be when I grew up, I would always say a time traveler.  I admit it was pretty disappointing when I became old enough to realize the technology wasn’t (ever?) going to be advanced enough for me to choose that as a career. Being a librarian is a great Plan B to fall back on, however!

Free CE and Training This Week – November 20-24

2017 November 19
by Christina Manz

Our weekly listing of free training online and free Texas workshops is updated as new events are added – throughout the week! See what’s happening on the CE calendar. Confirm the date and time when you register, or follow links for archive information. Events listed in Central Time.

Tuesday November 21, 2017
Accelerating Census Data in Excel: Basic Visualization and Analysis (U.S. Census Bureau)
During this course you will learn how to download census data access using the American FactFinder for formatting in Excel. You will also learn how to create basic data visualizations and how to conduct advanced analyses of census data.
Time: 12-1:30 p.m.

BTYBB: Consumer Health

2017 November 16
by Henry Stokes

High speed Internet, or Broadband… It’s a technology that allows for the collection and analysis of massive amounts of data, making it instantly meaningful to people right where they happen to be, often in crucial, life-saving ways.Image of library getting powered by broadband with words "Brought to you by Broadband"

Last week, for my series, “Brought To You By Broadband”, or BTYBB, I discussed the benefit that library broadband brings to the area of job searching and training. Today I’m shining the spotlight on: Consumer Health.

Image to represent Consumer Health

               Consumer Health

More than two-thirds of Americans turn to the Internet for health information. But are they getting credible, fact-based info?  Is just googling a health-related question and clicking on a random link from the results causing more harm than good?

Enter the library!

Library staff are health literacy’s first responders, helping patrons find authoritative sources to answer their health related questions. They have the knowledge of where to look, how to navigate it, and who is worth getting answers from. Plus, they can even provide the access to it in the first place.

Enter the broadband!

A fast, reliable Internet connection acts as the oil in the machine to make things run smoothly to help first responders do their job.  Studies also show that communities with broadband access are healthier, and those that are more digitally isolated have higher rates of chronic illnesses like obesity and diabetes.  The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has created a recently-updated web-based interactive mapping tool to see how your county measures up in this regard.   The data shows that rural areas that also lack broadband access report having residents with more poor health outcomes.

There’s such a vastly different health picture between the broadband-haves and the have-nots – almost different cultures – that it’s been suggested that libraries in the have-not areas should consider creating specific programming, like diet and other care practices, to address the health issues that their communities face.

Meanwhile, among well-connected households, health fitness apps and wearable devices are becoming more common. Marketing firm Park Associates recently found that 21% of U.S. broadband households use wellness, fitness, or diet apps to monitor and assess their own health and use that data to improve it – making them significantly more informed and giving them an information advantage.  In the future, we’ll see that percentage rise; plus, we can expect the development of more advanced artificial intelligence (AI) that will assist in the monitoring and assessment, improving the results that these users are receiving.  All of this real-time data uploading, downloading, real-time analysis, etc. is extremely bandwidth-intensive.  Communities without access will be left in the dark. The library may be one of the only places in the community that can share and showcase this health-improving technology.

The library is in a prime spot to enter the emerging space of telemedicine, or telehealth, in a big way.

Kiosks placed within a broadband-enriched library can provide a place for patrons to employ video communication technology and speak one-on-one with a live healthcare provider (via separate encrypted & secure connection).  There could be medical equipment at the kiosk that patrons can use on themselves, with the doctor on hand to read the real-time data and determine diagnoses and treatments.  For example, they could look at a patient’s skin via high def cameras, or remotely listen to hearts and lungs. This allows doctors and patients to avoid the need to travel long distances to see each other in person. It beams excellent healthcare straight to the patient’s vicinity, a place in the community that’s known and trusted, with staff at hand that can help patients understand and navigate the new technologies. The doctor could stay at her office; and all the patron would have to do is visit the local library.  The chief ingredient to making this kind of service happen is, you guessed it, broadband.

And we’re already seeing signs that libraries with highspeed-capacity are exploring the idea of offering telehealth. In some cases, this already begun.  Just last month, Jackson County Library in Kentucky was set to open an outpatient satellite clinic specifically for veterans, and public libraries in two North Carolina counties have health kiosks that let patrons screen themselves for mental health and substance abuse conditions, with a dedicated phone line to connect them as needed to treatment resources. 

In conclusion, it’s a pretty simple formula:

Libraries + Broadband + Health literacy training (from library staff) +  Telehealth = Significantly improved health and more $$$ (less health care costs) for the community

For further reading on this topic, please see the resources at WebJunction’s Health Happens at the Library project.


So how can libraries keep their speeds up and stay at the forefront of these state-of-the-art services?  The federal discount program – E-rate – has been pivotal in connecting libraries and enabling them to afford broadband. It provides billions of dollars each year for libraries. Money is just put on the table for libraries to use – Don’t let it just sit there!

It’s understood that broadband in Texas libraries means a healthier Texas. This year, the State of Texas Legislature appropriated $1 million to TSLAC to support Texas public libraries in using E-rate for the next two years to secure faster connectivity. The Libraries Connecting Texas project can help your library stay up to speed. But act now! The window is closing and we’re only accepting 100 libraries.


Logo for the Libraries Connecting Texas project

Video Premier: TSLAC Rebuilding Texas Libraries Grants | Aransas County ISD

2017 November 15
by Kyla Hunt

The Texas State Library and Archives Commission Rebuilding Texas Libraries Grants are designed to aid libraries that sustained damage during the hurricane and its aftermath. The goal was to assist Texas libraries in restoring services and programs to their patrons and to enable libraries to respond directly to the disaster. This grant program funds operating expenditures such as library supplies and materials, technology, furniture, and contractual services. Funds are made possible by the Institute of Museum and Library Services.

Aransas County ISD ( Rockport, TX) facilities are closed indefinitely forcing students into makeshift facilities thereby affecting the programs and services of five campuses. TSLAC has approved a $25,000 grant to help Aransas County ISD libraries purchase books, rolling shelving, tablet and/or notebook computers, makerspace materials, and other furnishings.

“Three months after Harvey, families and community members are still struggling to find a sense of normal in our small town. Many are still living in untenable circumstances. Our school libraries are much more than the books and online resources we curate for our students. We provide many community programs and services beyond our school walls and serve as a safe harbor for many of our students throughout the school day. The TSLAC Disaster Relief Grant will help us provide not only the books and resources needed, but the programs that offer care, love and support to help our community find a sense of normal.”

Linda Erwin, Library Media Services | Aransas County ISD | Rockport, Texas

Register now for December sessions of Telling Your Library’s Story!

2017 November 14

Small Library Management Training ProgramWe’re about a month out from our December sessions of the SLM Telling Your Library’s Story workshop! Space is still open; if you’re near Diboll, Mount Pleasant, Uvalde or New Braunfels, register here!

Program Description

One of the most important roles of the library manager today is the articulation of the value, benefit, worth and impact of their library to

  • users and non-users (general public and community-at-large),
  • their umbrella institutions,
  • advisory and governing board members,
  • stakeholders and partners including profit and not profit entities.

This 6.5 hour workshop will integrate classic and still-successful techniques with today and tomorrow’s new visualizations. Content will be presented through extensive examples of successful stories and will include

  • best practices of storytelling with both anecdotal and data content;
  • provide extensive information on how managers can illustrate with the simple data they already have; and,
  • how managers can add layers of data to provide an even bigger, more significant picture.

Participants should leave this workshop confident in telling the story of their library using classic, enhanced, and best practices of current data and storytelling techniques. Focus will be placed on engaging your community with visually-striking presentations and strategically-delivered information and in verbally communicating the library’s value clearly and concisely with ease.

Instructor: Julie Todaro has been a library manager for over thirty years and has experience in all types of libraries and library settings. She has been a long-time faculty member of the Small Library Management series, is a Dean in a community college library, consults, presents workshops, and is an author and frequent presenter at association conferences and in organizational settings. Julie is the immediate past president of the American Library Association, the world’s oldest and largest association for librarians and her presidential initiative focused on the expertise and value of librarians and library workers as well as the value of libraries and their services, resources and programming. Todaro is also the author of Library Management for the Digital Age: A New Paradigm (Rowman & Littlefield, 2014) and Mentoring A to Z (Neal-Schuman, 2015).

CE Credit: 6.5 TSLAC CE hours

Audience: All are welcome, though these workshops are designed for staff without Master’s degrees in Library Science serving communities of less than 25,000 people.

Cost: FREE!

Contact Kyla Hunt if you have special space, equipment or language needs.

The Inclusive Library – Effectively Responding to a Mental Health Crisis Webinar Recap

2017 November 13
by Naomi Ditullio

Last Thursday, November 9 the Texas State Library and Archives Commission, through a partnership with the Austin affiliate of the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI Austin) and the Austin Police Department’s Crisis Intervention Team, offered part one of this two-part webinar.

Karen Ranus, Executive Director of NAMI Austin, and Jaime Von Seltmann, Senior Police Officer with the Austin Police Department’s Crisis Intervention Team, provided practical tips on defining mental illness, recognizing the signs of a mental health crisis, and responding to patrons who may be experiencing a mental health crisis. They discussed when and who to call in a crisis, and provided concrete information on what to do and say should you need to call law enforcement. They also discussed what to expect from law enforcement and assigned some critical homework to all who participated in the session.

Here are just a few of the glowing comments we received about this webinar:

  •  “Wow, what an effective and empowering session. I appreciate the time and effort that went into planning this program and look forward to the next session.  These two presenters have great passion for the topic and it shows in their presentation.  Thank you for making this presentation available to libraries.  Listening is the first step in understanding and they both made the topic understandable.”
  • “Very informative and well-developed webinar. Presenters were excellent and engaging. Looking forward to Part 2 next week.”
  • “Thank you for a very clear and informative session. I’m looking forward to next week.”
  • “Thank you to the presenters for being so articulate, informed, and dedicated. Thank you TSLAC.”

If you missed it, you still have time to watch the recording of part one and then participate in part two this coming Thursday, November 16 from 2 to 3:30pm CST. Please note that if you would like to be able to print out a completion certificate with TSLAC CE hours, you will need to first log in to our Online Training site with your user account and then you will need to enroll yourself in the online course before viewing the recording.

To register for part two, please visit:

Questions? Please contact or 1-800-252-9386 (toll-free in Texas).

Free CE and Training This Week – November 13-17

2017 November 12
by Christina Manz

Our weekly listing of free training online and free Texas workshops is updated as new events are added – throughout the week! See what’s happening on the CE calendar. Confirm the date and time when you register, or follow links for archive information. Events listed in Central Time.

Monday November 13, 2017
Teach Leaders How to Think Before Teaching Them What to Do (Training Industry)
Join us for this complimentary Training Industry webinar, sponsored by D2L. Your host, Dr. Sam Shriver, executive vice president of The Center for Leadership Studies, will share practical insights on how leaders at any level can increase their effectiveness by improving their ability to accurately diagnose the variables of their opportunity to influence.
Time: 12-1:00 p.m.

Partnering for Success: How Milwaukee Public Schools Is Leveraging National Service to Improve Low-Performing Schools (Alliance for Excellent Education/Future Ready Schools)
This webinar will address how school districts can leverage national service programs like AmeriCorps to implement their plans for evidence-based school improvement under the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA). ESSA requires evidence-based interventions to improve low-performing schools, and effective partnerships with organizations that work with AmeriCorps members can play a significant role in supporting schools and districts across the country.
Time: 3-4:00 p.m.

Tuesday November 14, 2017
Virtual Conference: Get Ready for Year-End (Network for Good)
Join this free virtual conference packed with information to help you rally your supporters and crush your fundraising goals this year. You’ll come away with the tips and strategy you need to create better campaigns, get your board involved and energized, learn about Network for Good tools, and write your best-ever appeal.
Time: 11-3:00 p.m.

Reviving Your #GivingTuesday to Increase Fundraising Success (Blackbaud)
In this webinar, we’ll review how to analyze your previous #GivingTuesday goals and results from last year in preparation for this year. Michelle Boyle, director of institutional advancement at the Maryland Zoo, will return to discuss the outcome of #GivingZOODay and changes the organization implemented for 2017. We will also discuss the importance of stewarding after #GivingZOODay.
Time: 12-1:00 p.m.

It’s a New World—How to Cultivate Your Community Online Between Fundraising Events (Firespring)
How do you keep supporters engaged between major fundraising events? This webinar will help you change your thinking about that precious time in between! Use this time wisely and your community will be primed and ready to support your next event.
Time: 12-1:00 p.m.

Creating a Culture of Volunteer Engagement (VolunteerMatch)
It’s important to create a culture of inclusion and engagement of volunteers within your organization. But, it can be hard to recognize what your current culture says to volunteers, or identify how to make changes to help volunteers feel more welcome. This webinar will help you identify how your organization’s current culture is shaping or limiting what volunteers do, and provide steps you can take to start to create more understanding, respect, and appreciation for engaging volunteers.
Time: 1-2:00 p.m.

National Cancer Institute’s Information Resources (Federal Depository Library Program)
This webinar will provide an overview of the NCI’s evidence-based resources available on the organization’s website. These include educational materials for patients, families, and health professionals, as well as cancer statistics, dictionaries, and an image repository.
Time: 1-2:00 p.m.

New Youth Nonfiction for Winter and Beyond (Booklist)
This free, one-hour webinar will explore new nonfiction titles for preschool to young adult readers. You’ll hear about new picture books, STEAM titles, and online resources for educators from Books on Tape/Listening Library, Simon & Schuster, DK, Holiday House, and IPG.
Time: 1-2:00 p.m.

You May Not Be Walt Disney, But You Can Draw and Animate (Insync Training)
All you need is a story, and you’re ready to create simple yet effective visuals and animations without knowing how to draw or animate. Yes, it’s that simple. Just use automatic drawing tools, Canva, and GoAnimate!
Time: 1-2:00 p.m.

Storytelling for Community Relationships (Infopeople)
Storytelling is a powerful tool because it builds trust and understanding. From podcasts, videos, livestreams and unique programming, there are many ways that librarians can utilize the power of storytelling to build transformational community relationships.
Time: 2-3:00 p.m.

Wednesday November 15, 2017
Not Just Bingo: Library Services and Programs for Older Adults (National Network of Libraries of Medicine)
To support older adults in our community, libraries must be prepared to provide dynamic, educational and creative programming. Stacey Lewis, Manager of Adult Programming at St. Louis County Library, discusses how to tap into community resources and partnerships to provide a wide range of program opportunities, tips for developing and sustaining partnerships, and specific examples of programs and services that have worked for this large metropolitan library system.
Time: 11-12:00 p.m.

Evaluating Government Customer Service (GovLoop)
How can agencies improve government services without spending too much money or costing taxpayers too much time? Join Christopher Dorobek and his panel of government experts as they discuss the current state of customer service and plot its future.
Time: 1-2:00 p.m.

Telling the Story of Volunteer Impact (VolunteerMatch)
You want to share the impact volunteers have in your organization and in the community, but often the information you track doesn’t help you tell that story. This webinar will help you move past number of volunteers and number of hours and start telling the real story. You’ll learn about information gathering and the key components to good storytelling, how to evaluate your current measurements and how to build support for a more thorough measurement and evaluation program, and how to engage other staff – paid and volunteer – in this work. You’ll also receive a worksheet to help you begin to tell the story of volunteer impact in your organization.
Time: 1-2:00 p.m.

LTC: National Issues Forums (3 of 3) (Programming Librarian)
Join the National Issues Forums Institute (NIFI) to learn how academic libraries can convene deliberative forums on important issues, thereby solidifying their role as a campus center for interdisciplinary and intellectual development while exploring pathways to civic engagement.
Time: 1-2:30 p.m.

Going Digital (Lyrasis)
Join us for a one hour free webinar that briefly introduces the critical components of digital content creation and collection development.
Time: 1:30-2:30 p.m.

Secrets from the Front Lines: How Schools Can Boost Digital Engagement (edWeb)
In this edWebinar, you will hear valuable insight on boosting the digital engagement at your school from library media specialist and technology liaison Kelly Hladek of the School City of Hammond in Indiana. In just one year, checkouts from the district’s digital library increased by 184 percent. You’ll learn about many of their proven best practices for engaging students, teachers and the community with the eBook and audiobook collection—including some creative approaches you may have never thought of.
Time: 3-4:00 p.m.

Healthy Aging – Promoting Healthy Living in Older Adults through Quality Health Information (National Network of Libraries of Medicine)
This webinar focuses on seniors and their use and access to Quality Health Information. Resources from National Institute on Aging (link is external) (NIA) and MedlinePlus will be highlighted.
Time: 3-4:00 p.m.

Pitching the Library: The Elevator Speech (edWeb)
This edWebinar will equip participants with talking points to promote library programs, reframing their work with new language, and dispelling myths about librarianship.
Time: 4-5:00 p.m.

Thursday November 16, 2017
Building a Sponsorship Proposal That Works (Charity Village)
Are you sending out sponsorship packages every week and hearing nothing back? Gold, Silver, Bronze doesn’t work…but what do you use instead? Simply throwing together a bunch of facts about your cause along with a chart with predefined levels is not going to cut it in the highly competitive sponsorship space. Building a sponsorship deck is a process and it requires your organization to ask some tough questions. In this session, sponsorship expert Chris Baylis of The Sponsorship Collective will show you exactly what you need to do to build a business case that sponsors will want to read.
Time: 12-1:00 p.m.

New Data Tools from the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis (Federal Depository Library Program)
Viewers will learn about the Bureau of Economic Analysis’ (BEA’s) new “satellite” accounts for health care, arts and culture, and travel and tourism. Complementing the BEA’s health data, we will also look at heath cost data from the U.S. Agency for Health Research Quality, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, and the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Service.
Time: 1-2:00 p.m.

Holiday Stressbusters (InSync Training)
What should be a season of love and joy often turns instead to tiring weeks of overspending, overindulging, disappointment and STRESS! Join facilitator Jane Bozarth for a look at common causes of holiday stress and ways to combat them. Leave this fun, interactive session with an action plan for taking back the spirit of the season!
Time: 1-2:00 p.m.

The Inclusive Library – Effectively Responding to a Mental Health Crisis (Part 2) (Texas State Library and Archives Commission)
Mental health issues impact 1 in 5 Americans each year which has a higher prevalence rate than cancer, diabetes and asthma. Yet, most people are ill-equipped and unsure about how best to respond when a person is struggling through a mental health crisis. As a community gathering space, libraries may experience a higher number of incidents of people experiencing a crisis. If you’re not sure how to respond effectively and would like to develop some tools for addressing and de-escalating crisis situations in a calm, responsible and compassionate way, you’ll want to participate in this two-part training provided collaboratively by the Austin Police Department’s Crisis Intervention Team and the Austin affiliate of the National Alliance on Mental Illness.
Time: 2-3:30 p.m.

Looking for Commonsense? (North Dakota State Library)
Join the crowd! Check out what Commonsense Education has for teachers. In this webinar I will show you around the website, especially the Digital Citizenship portion for librarians. If you haven’t checked out this valuable resource, be prepared to be impressed with lesson plans, activity sheets, short videos, and even resources for parents. All lessons are aligned to the Common Core Standards. I will even correlate the digital citizenship lessons to the ND standards. Join me for the “commonsense” scoop!
Time: 1:30-2:00 p.m.

Take the Plunge: STREAM (School Library Journal/ISTE)
Add an “R,” Reading, to STEAM and ramp up student learning. In this free session, you’ll glean insight from STREAM practitioners and tips on integrating science, technology, reading, engineering, arts, and math.
Time: 2-3:00 p.m.

Digital Storytelling with Google Chrome Apps: Reaching Out to Authentic Audiences (Simple K12)
Join Nikki D Robertson as she shares a variety of ways to harness students’ natural inclination toward storytelling with a variety of Google Chrome Apps you can start using in your classroom tomorrow!
Time: 4-4:30 p.m.

It all Fits Together: The New National Standards for Learners, School Librarians, and School Libraries (American Association of School Librarians)
Join AASL Standards editorial board and implementation task force chairs Marcia A. Mardis and Mary Keeling on a guided tour of the standards development process as well as in-depth introductions to the National School Library Standards (NSLS) integrated content designed to support and enhance learners’ experiences, school librarians’ practice, and the alignment between school libraries and learning goals.
Time: 6-7:00 p.m.

Friday November 17, 2017
Reading the Future (Maine State Library)
What does the future of your organization look like? How will libraries, businesses, non-profits, and community organizations be impacted by technology? How will they communicate and what tools will be available to help them adapt in order to best suit their customers’ needs?  These were some of the questions posed at the second Library Futures Conference (the first was held back in 2007) Members of the Maine State Library, in partnership with the New Jersey State Library, were invited to attend the conference this year, and were treated to observations and discourses given by some of the premiere futurists in the fields of business, education and technology.  During this webinar, the conference attendees will share their own insights and interpretations – as applied to libraries – from this experience, and invite Maine librarians to ask their own questions about the rapidly changing future of libraries.
Time: 1-2:00 p.m.

BTYBB: Job Search/Training

2017 November 9
by Henry Stokes

High speed Internet, or Broadband… no other technology has produced as much innovation and economic growth. And we’re just starting to see its potential. It’s the primary resource that will fuel the future.Image of library getting powered by broadband with words "Brought to you by Broadband"

I’m starting a new series here on the Library Developments blog called, “Brought To You By Broadband”, or BTYBB.  In each post, I’ll be shining a spotlight on a different key benefit brought to you by a library’s broadband connection. To get things started, I’ll discuss how it enhances job search and training for the community.

Image to represent Job Search / Training

                Job Search / Training

Research has shown that communities that improve their broadband service increase the number of local businesses, generate new jobs, and significantly improve the economy.  Community anchor institutions such as libraries need to ensure that adults of working age can access educational opportunities, build job skills, and find employment.  Without high-capacity broadband, libraries cannot position themselves for the future and realize their full potential in our increasingly digital world.

So what does broadband at the library bring to the community right now?

When people cannot afford Internet access at home, they go to the library and use the free public access computers. Here they can perform the tasks that will help them get a new, or better job:  work on their resumes, fill out job applications, and take online training to improve their skills.

These days, most jobs have to be searched for and applied for online, sometimes requiring the downloading and uploading of big files.  Most online training requires streaming or videoconferencing, both of which require a high speed Internet connection.  Faster, more reliable connections means the library’s services are working efficiently, freeing up staff time and ensuring the rest of the library runs better.  It means happier, more satisfied patrons, too.

Many libraries are providing broadband-enhanced maker spaces, robotics, and coding programs for young people, teaching valuable STEM/STEAM skills in technology that will prepare them better for their future job opportunities. Broadband acts as a fuel behind the scenes, propelling community members of all ages towards a better and more economically healthy tomorrow. And the library is the driving force getting them there.

One last point, and it’s an important one.  Just having broadband in the library isn’t enough.  Libraries need to provide robust digital-literacy training so that the job seekers and skill developers can navigate the broadband-enabled digital world effectively.  Who better than library staff to help people at the point of need with digital literacy?

In conclusion, it’s a pretty simple formula:

Libraries + Broadband + Digital literacy training (from library staff) = Big $$$$ for the community

So how can libraries keep their speeds up, particularly when demand is just going to get higher and higher?  The federal discount program – E-rate  – has been pivotal in connecting libraries and enabling them to afford broadband. It provides billions of dollars each year for libraries. Money is just  put on the table for libraries to use – Don’t let it just sit there!

It’s understood that broadband in Texas libraries means a better Texas economy.  This year, the State of Texas Legislature  appropriated $1 million to TSLAC  to support Texas public libraries in using E-rate for the next two years to secure faster connectivity. The Libraries Connecting Texas project can help your library stay up to speed.  But act now!  The window is closing and we’re only accepting 100 libraries.


Logo for the Libraries Connecting Texas project

FCC Consumer Guides – Now in Vietnamese, Tagalog, Chinese and Korean

2017 November 8
by Kyla Hunt

We are passing this along for the Consumer Affairs and Outreach Division of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) in Washington, DC.

The FCC has newly translated consumer guides in Vietnamese, Tagalog, Chinese and Korean.  When the FCC contacted the American Library Association, they identified the State of Texas as having a particularly high population of Asian American and Pacific Islander individuals, and they wanted to share this information with librarians throughout the state.

Below are links to the top 5 consumer guides searched for on the FCC’s webpage.  Links are included in various languages.

Children’s Internet Protection Act (CIPA):

Stop Unwanted Calls, Texts, and Faxes:

Antennas and Digital Television:

Spoofing and Caller-ID:

International Long Distance Calling Made Simple Tip Sheet:

Questions? Contact the FCC directly at their Contact page.

Free CE and Training This Week – November 6-10

2017 November 5
by Christina Manz

Our weekly listing of free training online and free Texas workshops is updated as new events are added – throughout the week! See what’s happening on the CE calendar. Confirm the date and time when you register, or follow links for archive information. Events listed in Central Time.

Monday November 6, 2017
Integrating Media Literacy and Critical Thinking (edWeb)
In this edWebinar discover how you can help students grapple with these topics in a thoughtful, honest and civil way that encourages thinking about their own biases. Veteran teacher and media literacy trainer Chris Sperry will engage participants in analyzing classroom models of inquiry-based media analysis to explore pedagogy and practice.
Time: 2-3:00 p.m.

Tuesday November 7, 2017
Picture This! Great New Picture Books! (Booklist)
Join us and publishers from Sterling Books, Albert Whitman, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, Tundra Books, and Owlkids for a first look at terrific new books. Titles discussed will range from board books for ages 0 – 3 to picture books for up to age 8.
Time: 1-2:00 p.m.

Raise More Money With “Win-Win” Partnerships (Nonprofit Hub)
Is your nonprofit raising as much money as it wants from businesses? Most nonprofits aren’t because they either don’t know how or they target the least lucrative part of the business: the company checkbook. In this webinar, business giving expert Joe Waters will reveal the strategies he’s used and taught nonprofits how to raise six-figures with businesses.
Time: 10:30-11:30 a.m.

Legal Reference: The Basics (Washington State Library)
This workshop will provide an introduction to basic legal research. Topics covered will include primary and secondary sources of the law, online resources for finding the law created by the three branches of government, and an overview of Washington State Law Library services available to librarians and their patrons. Presented by Shani Cate, State Law Library.
Time: 11-12:00 p.m.

eLearning Authoring and Production Tools (Insync Training)
In this session, you will see a breakdown of each phase of an eLearning project from cradle-to-grave – including storyboarding, audio and video needs, graphics creation, and image sourcing. A toolbox will be shared, along with several tools available both at a cost and free.
Time: 1-2:00 p.m.

Ask Us Anything: GuideStar Nonprofit Profiles (GuideStar)
Just in time for giving season, join us on November 7 for an interactive Q & A session where you’ll get your chance to ask GuideStar profile coaches any and all questions about your organization’s GuideStar Nonprofit Profile.
Time: 1-2:00 p.m.

Get Ready for Hour of Code (edWeb)
In this edWebinar Kelly Knight, STEAM Coordinator at Riverside Presbyterian Day School in Jacksonville, FL, will be sharing her tips, tricks, and tools for making Hour of Code epic. Administrators, principals, teachers, librarians, and coaches for grades three to eight will benefit from attending this session.
Time: 3-4:00 p.m.

Wednesday November 8, 2017
Partnering with Community Health Workers (National Network of Libraries of Medicine)
Community Health Workers (CHWs) play a crucial role in improving the health literacy of their communities. They have a unique understanding of those they serve and can facilitate communication and trust. By partnering with CHWs, libraries can improve the effectiveness of their community health outreach initiatives. Learn more about the role that CHWs play in their communities and how to develop fruitful partnerships.
Time: 10-11:00 a.m.

BIG Ideas for Small Libraries (SirsiDynix)
American Fork Library has felt similar challenges but they don’t let being a small library stop them from having Big ideas! Join Erin Warnick and Lori Bonner as they talk about how to make small library programs successful.
Time: 12-1:00 p.m.

Introduction to Project Budgets (GrantSpace)
If preparing a budget for your foundation grant is holding you back, this class will provide you with step-by-step instructions on how to generate a standard project budget for a foundation proposal.
Time: 1-2:00 p.m.

How to Avoid Fundraising’s Quiet Killer: Donor Attrition (Firespring)
In this session, Jay will help us learn how to step off of the donor acquisition treadmill and start revving up donor retention. Seven out of ten donors give only once, but this doesn’t have to be your reality. Jay will help us understand how a 10% increase in donor retention will more than double the lifetime value of a donor and minimize our reliance on producing constant appeals for new donors.
Time: 1:30-2:30 p.m.

Thursday November 9, 2017
Tools & Trends in Genealogy-Something for Everyone: Genealogical Reference Service in the 21st Century (Indiana State Library)
These are the very best of times for genealogists and the librarians who serve them—so much information is readily available and so many are engaged in this activity. A brief environmental scan will set the stage for discussing how to leverage digital assets and physical collections to best serve the widest range of customers.
Time: 9-10:00 a.m.

“For the Greater (Not) Good (Enough): Open Access and Information Privilege” (OCLC)
Char Booth will address the concept that open access has had a huge impact on publishing and scholarly communication, yet who you are, what you earn, and how you research still create serious barriers to information availability. Char will examine open access through the perspective of information privilege, highlighting actions libraries and allied organizations can take to reduce access inequities in pursuit of social and economic justice.
Time: 10-11:00 a.m.

Reconciling Communities: Planting Seeds of Change through Cultural Education and Truth-telling (Programming Librarian)
In this webinar, the program’s creators will explore the 18-month development process, delivery and follow-up of the Truth & Reconciliation in Our Community event.
Time: 12-1:00 p.m.

Tear Down the Walls to Create Anytime, Anywhere Learning (Alliance for Excellent Education/Future Ready Schools)
In this webinar, panelists will share experiences on how their districts shifted to digital as well as unique approaches to transforming learning into a personalized experience that enages students and improves their outcomes.
Time: 1-1:30 p.m.

Playing by the Rules: Creating an Effective Volunteer Handbook (VolunteerMatch)
When was the last time you reviewed your Volunteer Handbook or Policies and Procedures Manual? It’s probably been too long. Learn how to create a living document that can help both paid and volunteer staff be better informed and know what is expected of them. A good Volunteer Handbook can also help you better identify and deal with challenging volunteers. Whether you’re just starting to create a Handbook or if you’re looking for best practices on information to include, this webinar will evaluate the Handbook you have and help you create a stronger framework for your volunteer engagement program.
Time: 1-2:00 p.m.

Getting Ready to Fundraise in 2018 (GuideStar)
As you look ahead to next year, let’s focus on systematically aligning your team and goals, while setting realistic targets that will help you raise money more consistently than any silver bullet.
Time: 1-2:00 p.m.

Imaging in Context: Introduction to Still Image Digitization for Smaller Institutions (Connecting to Collections Care)
In this webinar, we’ll describe the main elements of paper-based digitization, including the setup of scanning hardware and processing software, quality standards and best practices as defined by the Federal Agencies Digital Guidelines Initiative, the scanning process itself, and we’ll wrap up by giving an overview of how to preserve your digitized assets for the long-term, including some details about collecting and storing metadata.
Time: 1-2:30 p.m.

Protecting Your Online Privacy: Risks And Strategies (Infopeople)
Think you don’t need to care about your online privacy? Not doing anything shady or illegal, so it doesn’t matter…right? As it turns out, this topic is growing in importance as people realize the long-term ramifications of not being privacy-aware.  Understand why protecting one’s online privacy is now so critical and what can happen when one doesn’t.
Time: 2-3:00 p.m.

The Inclusive Library – Effectively Responding to a Mental Health Crisis (Part 1) (Texas State Library and Archives Commission)
Mental health issues impact 1 in 5 Americans each year which has a higher prevalence rate than cancer, diabetes and asthma. Yet, most people are ill-equipped and unsure about how best to respond when a person is struggling through a mental health crisis. As a community gathering space, libraries may experience a higher number of incidents of people experiencing a crisis. If you’re not sure how to respond effectively and would like to develop some tools for addressing and de-escalating crisis situations in a calm, responsible and compassionate way, you’ll want to participate in this two-part training provided collaboratively by the Austin Police Department’s Crisis Intervention Team and the Austin affiliate of the National Alliance on Mental Illness.
Time: 2-3:30 p.m.