Diversity and Inclusion

Developing and Maintaining a Diverse Collection

As you develop your library program, there are critical steps you should take to analyze, develop, and maintain a diverse collection. The VAASL Diversity and Inclusion Committee has curated a framework of resources to support librarians in this work.

Section One is provided here. The full resource document is available for VAASL members (login to access).

  1. Understand why you need a diverse collection

    1. As School Librarians, we endeavor to meet the needs of all of our students. Of concern is that our collections not only reflect the diversity of our student body, but provide our students with materials that authentically reflect both themselves and others (Article I of the American Library Association’s Library Bill of Rights).

      This authentic reflection allows students to see themselves reflected in literature, observe those different than themselves, and provide for a way to access those different cultures: the “Mirrors, windows, and sliding glass doors” described by literary scholar Dr. Rudine Sims Bishop.

      “Diverse Collections: An Interpretation of the Library Bill of Rights.” Advocacy, Legislation & Issues, ALA American Library Association, 11 July 2019, www.ala.org/advocacy/intfreedom/librarybill/interpretations/diversecollections.
      Reading Rockets. “Mirrors, Windows and Sliding Doors.” YouTube, 30 Jan. 2015, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_AAu58SNSyc
  2. Know your school and collection
  3. Create a plan
  4. Stay informed
    1. award resources
    2. diverse and inclusive literature
    3. diverse reading recommendations