What is a School Library?

“A school library is a school’s physical and digital learning space where reading, inquiry, research, thinking, imagination, and creativity are central to students’ information-to-knowledge journey and to their personal, social, and cultural growth.”

IFLA School Library Guidelines (2nd revised edition, 2015)

What is a Library Learning Commons?

“A learning commons is a whole school approach to building a participatory learning community. The library learning commons is the physical and virtual collaborative learning hub of the school. It is designed to engineer and drive future-oriented learning and teaching throughout the entire school.”

Leading Learning: Standards of Practice for School Library Learning Commons in Canada

Library Associations

Ontario Library Association

The Ontario Library Association (OLA) is the oldest continually operating non-profit library association in Canada. OLA is a multi-sector association, and includes a division for school libraries.

Ontario School Library Association

The Ontario School Library Association (OSLA)is a division of OLA. The mission of the OSLA is to promote, develop and advocate for strong, equitable school library programs throughout the province.

Canadian School Libraries

Canadian School Libraries (CSL) is a registered non-profit charitable organization dedicated to professional research and development in the field of the school library learning commons in Canada.

Canadian Federation of Library Associations

The Canadian Federation of Library Associations / Fédération canadienne des associations de bibliothèques (CFLA-FCAB) is the united, national voice of Canada’s library community.

International Association of School Librarianship

With representation from 52 countries, IASL provides an international forum for people interested in promoting effective school library programs as viable instruments in the educational process.

School Library Standards and Guidelines

Leading Learning: Standards of Practice for School Library Learning Commons in Canada

Leading Learning serves as a measurement tool to help schools determine where they are now with library facilities and programs and where they want to advance to. It provides a framework for growth for all schools to act on tangible steps for improvement. Leading Learning is published by Canadian School Libraries.

Foundations for School Library Learning Commons in Canada: A Framework for Success (Pending from CSL)

Foundations for School Library Learning Commons in Canada: A Framework for Success establishes strong policy, robust funding, and a commitment to equity of access as necessary foundations for school library programs. It describes the elements that frame program success. Foundations is a companion to Leading Learning, which focuses on program growth. Foundations & Frameworks is published by Canadian School Libraries.

International Federation of Library Associations School Library Guidelines (2nd revised edition, 2015)

IFLA School Library Guidelines were developed with contributions from many school library experts worldwide to assist school library professionals and educational decision-makers in their efforts to ensure that all students and teachers have access to effective school library programs and services, delivered by qualified school library personnel.

(OSLA Guideline re developing selection documents and procedures)


The Teaching Librarian

The Teaching Librarian is the official magazine of the Ontario School Library Association (OSLA). It is published three times a year to support OSLA members in providing significant and effective library programs and services.

Canadian School Libraries Journal

CSL Journal is an open access online journal that is published three times per year, and is the only national publication of its kind dedicated to school library practice.

School Libraries in Ontario

School Library Research (OLA)

This page from the Ontario Library Association summarizes the major research into school libraries in Ontario, Canada, and beyond.

School Library Issues and Advocacy

The Ontario Library Association’s resources explaining issues of concern for school libraries in Ontario, and provides resources for advocacy.