Media Release: State Shines a Light on Quality of Elementary School’s Library

Sandpiper Shores Elementary School was recently designated as a Florida Power Library School, acknowledging the excellence of its library media program.

The school is the only one in Palm Beach County, and one of just seven in the state to obtain the recognition. The Florida Power Library Schools Award (FPLS) is sponsored by the Florida Association of Supervisors of Media (FASM) and the Florida Department of Education.

It provides statewide recognition to schools that have developed and implemented a plan that integrates the library media program with teacher collaboration and student achievement.

To qualify for the award, Sandpiper Shores surveyed teachers, students, and parents about the library, assembling a binder containing documentation of the school’s programs, in addition to putting together a video showcasing their programs. The FASM committee also did a site visit to the school to tour the facilities.

“We are extremely excited to highlight the contributions of the library here at Sandpiper and in the community,” said Michelle Gunning, the school’s K-12 Instructional Library Media Specialist. “This means that our students are going to be lifelong learners and lovers of libraries and knowledge.”

The competitive FPLS application process is designed to identify school library media programs in Florida that meet the criteria outlined in a comprehensive Evaluation Rubric, the Expectations for Collaboration, Collections, and Connections to Enhance Learning. The Rubric measures six key components:

• Instruction
• Curriculum/Assessment Support
• Resource Management
• Program Administration
• Environment
• Advocacy

The school scored highly in each of the areas of assessment, validating their commitment to providing effective library resources to students. “Because of our program, our students’ interest in reading has skyrocketed and the culture of this campus now includes a love of literacy,” Gunning said.