Tim Salem Receives AASL Distinguished School Administrator Award

CHICAGO — Tim Salem, principal of Scotts Ridge Middle School, is the recipient of the 2022 Distinguished School Administrator Award from the American Association of School Librarians (AASL). Sponsored by ProQuest, the $2,000 award recognizes and honors a school administrator who has made worthy contributions to exemplary school library operations and to advancing the role of the school library in the educational program.

Janine Johnson, school librarian and proponent, shared with the committee, “Tim had a vision for a school library that could be more central to the building, fostering creative collaboration and experimentation. I knew when I was hired that his intention was to involve me in professional development and presentations at staff meetings. Tim believes in ‘Failing Forward’, encouraging risk taking which results in positive outcomes for students. It was clear from the start, Tim is a cheerleader for everyone in the building, especially the students in our library learning spaces.

The committee saw that Salem’s commitment to the school library was considerable. In Salem’s own words, “The role of Library Learning Commons (LLC) is critical in elevating learning beyond the confines of the classroom. Interdisciplinary connections led by our LLC deepens learning, broadens perspectives, and builds collaborations. Our LLC is the learning center of our building. All classes in our school work with our school librarian and support staff to create opportunities that stimulate curiosity, foster problem-solving skills and build confidence. Additionally, our LLC has created a genre-based system to encourage readers to make selections based on areas of interest. As a result, our students are consulting books at an all-time high! »

“The committee believes that Tim Salem embodies the true intent of this award in advancing the role of the school library in an effort that has been sustained for many years,” said committee chair Sarah Hunicke. “From encouraging Janine’s committee involvement, cross-departmental collaboration, and commitment to social justice, culminating in the co-presentation of “Race, Equity and Books: How Reading Can be an Entry Point for Essential Conversations” with Janine at 60 Connecticut State Administrators Association of Schools – Tim’s commitment to championing and advancing the managed school library throughout the school and can be felt beyond in the district and the state.

“AASL knows that the school librarian/administrator connection can be a game-changer for the school library and its ability to reach every learner in the school community,” said AASL President Jennisen Lucas. Lucas notes, “Tim’s superintendent recognizes that ‘our school libraries are considered the ‘heart’ of our schools, and this is a testament to Tim’s leadership.’ The AASL’s commitment to recognizing school administrators who support school librarians advances our vision that Every school librarian is a leader; each learner has a school librarianand we welcome Tim to our prestigious list of Distinguished Directors.

AASL award winners will be recognized at the 2023 AASL National Conference to be held October 19-21 in Tampa, Florida.

The American Association of School Librarians, www.aasl.org, a division of the American Library Association (ALA), empowers leaders to transform teaching and learning.

Martha K. Merrill