mission statement

January 31, 2006

When my headmaster asked us all for a new year’s goal, I found I had trouble narrowing my thoughts down to an average sort of goal. What I ended up sending to him, as a result, is the following “Mission Statement”:

As a librarian, my goal is to challenge assumptions. I would like to surround the students of this school with reminders, via the vast and limitless world of learning, that they do not [regardless of what they may think] know it all. There are mysteries and unknowns abounding, and just waiting for the occasion to astound students with the thrill of new knowledge. So I will stock this library with the best of what the world has to offer, in the way of cool facts [Reference materials], worlds unknown [Fantasy], strangers to get to know [Biography], and situations to experience [Fiction] . . .
As those in my profession are still stereotyped as relatively inaccessible or quiet or shy, my goal is to be a presence that students are happy to come to. I want to cheerfully be open to questions, to welcome “interruptions,” and to not let busyness with work to be done prevent me from always keeping one eye watching for questioning kids and one ear cocked for a whispered wondering.
Finally, how can I dare to promote a library if I do not devote myself to a lifetime of learning? I must pursue my own educational development. I cannot pretend to know it all already, and I cannot sit complacently in any semblance of “been there,” “done that,” or “know that.” I must get excited about new subjects to study and new skills to learn. And I will be transparent in my giddiness upon new discoveries. By doing so, I hope to impart to others the sense that it is a good thing, and a right thing, to be excited about learning.

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