Cornerstones of Science in partnership with the Institute of Innovative Learning, the University of Missouri School of Library and Information Science, OCLC/WebJunction, and nine state library agencies will develop a STEM Equity Framework for libraries and a Library Leadership training program. (They will be supported by a panel of public libraries, higher education MLS, the Urban Library Council and informal science educators.) Over 24 months, we will build state and public library capacities to serve as community catalysts for equitable STEM learning. We will strengthen library leaders’ skills and expertise to deliver equitable, inclusive culturally responsive services, in partnership with local leaders that address science-based issues of concern to local community members, particularly those from underserved and underrepresented groups.
The overarching goal for this project is that state and public library leaders have the capacity to deliver equitable, inclusive, and culturally responsive services, in partnership with local leaders, that address science-based issues of concern to local community members, particularly those from underserved audiences. The project’s objectives are:
- A STEM Equity Framework for libraries that describes the core diversity, equity,inclusion and social justice (DEISJ) and STEM literacy skills and competencies that library leadership needs to effect change in their communities.
- A STEM Equity Leadership training program that delivers the Framework’s core skills and competencies. Our pilot libraries will prepare a STEM Equity Library operational plan developed in partnership with local government, community leaders and underserved groups. Their plan will integrate equitable, inclusive, culturally responsive STEM literacy into library infrastructure, services and programming.
- Increase awareness about the STEM Equity Framework and Leadership Training – The project team, partners and advisors will increase awareness within the library community about the STEM Equity Framework and the leadership training program.
Project Outcomes (examples of changes in knowledge, attitudes, and behaviors)
- Participating state libraries endorse, adopt, and support the use of the STEM Equity Framework within public libraries in their states.
- There is increased awareness among participating state and public library leaders about the need for and benefits of a STEM Equity Framework.
- The pilot library participants demonstrate increased skills and competencies of DEISJ and STEM literacy skills needed to successfully engage all members of their community in science-based issues.
- The pilot library participants demonstrate increased interest, confidence, and capacity in integrating equitable, inclusive culturally responsive STEM literacy infrastructure, programming, and services into their library operations.
Serving Communities: Sustainable Inclusion-Centered Library Leadership Practices Framework
The Serving Communities Framework (PDF) is designed for library directors interested in creating libraries that are responsive to community well-being through nurturing the practices, attitudes, and policies that provide the basis of community inclusion and the focus on the co-development of and access to actionable on-demand science information and services for adult learners.
This project was made possible in part by the Institute of Museum and Library Services (Grant number RE-250085-OLS-21). The views, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed here do not necessarily represent those of the Institute of Museum and Library Services.