Thursday, July 25, 2013

For Title I librarians...

from Gloria Meraz, 
Director of Communications
Texas Library Association


Dear Librarians,

The Comptroller recently announced a partnership with Texas libraries to help fight the childhood obesity issue in Texas. The Comptroller’s Office will mail resources to all Texas public libraries and select schools.  The press release is available at: http://www.window.state.tx.us/news2013/130716-tpl.html.

Recipients
·        All 910 Texas Public Libraries that report to the Texas State Library and Archives Commission will receive free materials.
·        Public schools, including charters, will receive the library materials that are Title 1 schools that have grades 3rd and lower and that are 89.5% economically disadvantaged.
·        Public schools, including charters, will also receive the sports equipment if the schools include grades 5 to 8 and whose student population scored 30 percent or higher in the BMI high risk on the latest Fitnessgram.  

The Comptroller’s Office is working with publishers to mail about a half dozen materials (books and/or DVDs). The Comptroller is legislatively mandated to develop efforts on this front and has created a Web portal called Reshaping Texas (http://www.reshapingtexas.org/) to provide information and resources. The partnership with Texas libraries is another effort in this arena.

Letters with each packet will be mailed out, and the Comptroller’s Office is asking for the librarians and P.E. instructors to fill out a survey to obtain information, including data on checkouts, programming, and estimated impact on the community/school population. Each school and public library will also receive posters and stickers about the program. The stickers are planned to be a reward to children that check out the titles sent to the schools or public libraries.  If the schools or public libraries run out of stickers, they can request more for free until the supply is all distributed.  The materials will be addressed to the principals of the schools or directors of the main or branch libraries so they are aware of the program.  

Libraries should expect to receive the materials in late August or in September. Since the materials are being donated by different publishing houses, there is no one standard set of resources that will be mailed, and materials may be shipped in different batches.

The Web portal also contains links to some organizations that provide programming support and resource materials. Additional information may be found at: http://www.reshapingtexas.org/content/reshaping-texas-books-libraries.

We are very excited about this partnership, as school and public libraries are critical to the learning needs of Texas children.  TLA will send out additional information as it becomes available.





***If you are one of the schools selected to receive these materials, you will need to send them for processing, so they can be circulated. When you send them over, please mark them as "Reshaping Texas" materials so we will know they are part of this program. We will need to assign them a special category in the catalog, so that you will be able to track their circulation and provide data to the Comptroller's office.***

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