WiLS March 2017 Member Interview: Keith Schroeder, School District of Marinette
One of our greatest joys at WiLS is hearing our members tell the stories of the big and important work they are doing – interesting new projects or initiatives, or even interesting and new approaches to old projects. And, in addition to hearing about it, it makes us even happier when we can share those stories with other members. Each month, WiLS is proud to feature an interview with one of our library members. This month, we interview Keith Schroeder, Quality Assurance Specialist: Personalized Learning, Community Education & Library Coordinator at the School District of Marinette.
Why did you, personally, choose to work in libraries?
I was a 7th-grade language arts teacher when our library media specialist retired. My principal felt that I had the background and love of reading and technology he was looking for to replace the retirement. It took a lot of thought and also me completing a library master’s program, but I applied for my emergency license and started working on my library license. My passion for libraries has only grown as I’ve been in libraries ever since.
Our libraries are centers where exploration and personalized learning will be able to grow and flourish in a technology and resource-rich environment.
What is unique about the culture of your library system and membership? How do you influence it?
Our libraries are becoming the hubs of their buildings with teachers sending small groups of students throughout the day to work on projects or to use the expertise of the library paraprofessionals. They have also enjoyed exploring our emerging STEAM makerspaces. Working together with my library team, we continue to evolve and fill emerging needs as we move toward personalized learning in our district.
What do you think is important to know about the patrons or community you work with? What helps you understand those needs?
Serving an Early Learning Center, three elementary schools, a middle school, and a high school keeps me very busy. Luckily we have a great team of highly qualified library paraprofessionals in each building. We work together as a team to create a safe, welcoming, exploring environment where our patrons always feel welcome. We do our best to make connections and get to know our staff and students as individuals. As a team we work together to meet the needs of each of the academic, personal, and building needs.
What big ideas are being worked on at your system or member libraries? What problems are being solved?
As we continue to roll out our one-to-one program and move toward personalized learning, the importance and necessity of a powerful library program will only continue to grow. Our libraries are centers where exploration and personalized learning will be able to grow and flourish in a technology and resource-rich environment.
Do you have anything else you’d like to share here?
The great thing about being in libraries is that you never know what tomorrow will bring. There’s always another great book being published or another innovative technology being introduced, so every day is a day that brings something new and exciting!
These interviews are part of a series of interviews with both WiLS library and vendor partners. Your feedback is appreciated. If you have any to offer on this article, or suggestions for upcoming interviews, contact Andrea Coffin at firstname.lastname@example.org.