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New Jersey Association of School Librarians
School Library Media Specialist (K-12)
Job Description

Qualifications: Holds NJ certification as a school library media specialist (SLMS). The NJ Department of Education is the agency that administers the certification regulations including the application process. See NJDOE, Certification & Induction, Educational Services Personnel for details and procedures.

Reports to: Building principal and/or other district administrator
Supervises:  Library paraprofessionals, parent volunteers, student library assistants, if applicable

Terms of Employment: Ten months or according to contract

Evaluation: Performance will be evaluated in accordance with district policies

Responsibilities of the School Library Media Specialist:

Program Administrator:

  • Establishes yearly and long-term goals for the library media program aligned with the district’s mission, goals, and objectives

  • Administers the library media program, developing policies and procedures to assure efficient and equitable access, operations and services

  • Selects, purchases and processes new materials to assure a current and balanced collection representing diverse points of view in accordance with the district materials selection policy

  • Conducts ongoing assessment for improvement to insure the effectiveness of the library media program

  • Maintains an online catalog and automated circulation system that provides access to the collection

  • Continuously evaluates library resources with respect to curricular needs, accuracy, diversity, and community interest, removing those that do not meet established criteria, ensuring that the collection stays current, relevant, and in good condition

  • Prepares and administers the library budget

  • Manages the staff and the physical and virtual spaces of the school library

Instructional Partner:

  • Collaborates and co-teaches with classroom educators to establish learning objectives and assessment strategies to develop individual and group inquiry-based learning experiences

  • Develops and maintains a teaching and learning environment that is collaborative, inclusive, inviting, flexible and conducive to learning

  • Participates in cross-content curriculum writing and implementation committees

  • Assists instructional staff in the selection, evaluation, and use of resources, in a variety of formats


  • Empowers all members of the learning community to become critical thinkers, enthusiastic readers, skillful researchers, curators, and ethical users of information

  • Provides group and individual instruction that addresses multiple literacies, including information literacy, media literacy, visual literacy, and technological literacy

  • Enables learners to seek knowledge, create new knowledge, and make real-world connections for lifelong learning

  • Encourages learners’ exploration and innovation at all levels in all curricular areas and in areas of personal interest through instruction and collection development

  • Performs regular assessment of student learning to ensure the program is meeting its goals, and empowers learners to assess their own work and the work of their peers

  • Promotes reading as a foundational skill for learning, personal growth, and enjoyment

  • Models an inquiry-based and collaborative approach to learning and the information search process

Information Specialist:

  • Curates, maintains, and disseminates customized collections of print and online materials aligned with individual, building-level, and district-wide goals, and provides guides to assist with access

  • Champions equity, access, and intellectual freedom for users within the physical space and beyond, and provides access to resources 24/7

  • Models digital citizenship, safety, and adherence to copyright and fair use requirements

  • Evaluates, introduces, and inspires the use of emerging technologies as tools to supplement school resources for the learning community 


  • Continuously engages in professional learning to support program improvement

  • Participates in local, state, and national professional organizations

  • Addresses educational issues with other educators in the building, at the district level, and at the professional association level

  • Serves as an active member of decision-making teams in the school and district  

  • Fosters a culture of collaboration and innovation to empower teachers and learners

  • Leads professional development to broaden understanding of the skills that comprise success in lifelong learning (e.g. critical thinking, reading, information literacy, digital citizenship, technology)

Adapted from the AASL National School Library Standards for Learners, School Librarians, and School Libraries (2018)

April 24, 2021

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