Author Archives: Nick Cavender

CILIP Conference 2022 – Day 2

Back at the Liverpool Exhibition Centre for the second day at CILIP Conference, starting with a really thought-provoking keynote from Prof Jacqueline McGlade talking about sustainable development and knowledge systems.

Librarians rule!

The takeaway message for me was that we need to map our networks and reimagine what we mean by beloning. Prof McGlade quoted Simone Weil, ‘To be rooted is perhaps the most important and least recognized need of the human soul.’

Morning sessions included a workshop on Censorship and Intellectual Freedom – a follow up to Thursday afternoon’s collaboration session, and a session on evidencing impact using the IFLA Storytelling Manual.

After lunch and a quick speed dating session of the Member Networks, there was a really great workshop on allyship led by John Vincent and Shirley Yarwood Jackson. We looked at what makes a good ally, what the barriers are, and what support is needed to overcome them. There was a really supportive environment, focused on the importance of standing in the gap in support of minority groups and recognising that EDI is not a tick box exercise but a journey, not a destnation. Sadly we also need to realise that progress made is being eroded.

The final session was a celebration from CILIP President Kate Robinson, highlighting that our strength is in our community, and #WeAreCILIP.  Our bursary winner Hannah was invited on stage to say what CILIP membership has given her as she has turned an empty classroom into a library that is at the heart of the school.

Keeping connected and keeping learning have been the main messages throughout Conference this year as we recover from Covid. Removing barriers and widening participation through CILIP Pathways and Apprenticeships is really important, and I’m really keen to help school librarians gain academic and professional qualifications that will bring them in to the wider library and information profession.

A great two days, and a lot to take in, but fantastic to feel part of a wider community.  As Hannah says, ‘Librarians rule!’ #WeAreCILIP.

Join today and be part of the wider profession #WeAreCILIP

CILIP Conference 2022

CILIP Conference at the Liverpool Exhibition Centre

A fantastic first day at CILIP Conference in Liverpool, starting with an inspirational keynote from Sayf Al Ashqar who rebuilt the Central Library at the University of Mosul after it was destroyed by ISIS. His comment that “the soul returned to the Library when the students came back”. He is now working to rebuild school libraries in Iraq.

Rebuilding and renewal is a theme running through Conference as we return to ‘normal’ after the pandemic.

Charlotte and Nick on the SLG stand at #CILIPConf22

Sessions throughout the day focused on EDI, Health Literacy, Intellectual Freedon and Censoship an Decolonising the Curriculum.

The final keynote from Krystal Vittles was indpirational. She set out that as librarians we have a profession, we are professionals, and we show professionalism in what we do.

It was great to meet so many people from CILIP HQ and school librarians including our rep Charlotte and our bursary winner Hannah. It was great to meet face to face and be surrounded by librarians from all sectors. We finished off with a fantastic evening reception at the Museum of Liverpool.

Day 1 over – and looking forward to Day 2. You can follow us @CILIPSLG #CILIPConf22.

CILIP Conference 2022

Nick and Charlotte from the SLG Committee and Hannah, our bursary winner, are excited to be a this year’s CILIP Conference and Expo on 7+8 July at Liverpool Exhibition Centre.

Come and see us on our stand where we will be talking about the work that we have been doing to promote school libraries and school librarians as we recover from lockdown. We have an exciting programme of webinars to support CPD and professional registration, and we can let you know about our SLG Conference 2023!

If you can’t be there this year, we will be tweeting throughout the two days as library and information professionals from all sectors will be sharing their experiences and knowledge. You can follow us @CILIPSLG #CILIPConf22.

This year’s focus is on how libraries can approach the challenges of the climate crisis, tackle misinformation and censorship, explore equalities, diversity and inclusion, as well as the consultation around CILIP’s new Intellectual Freedom policy.

Don’t forget to come and say hello!

Chartership WhatsApp for school librarians

If you are a school librarian and you are undertaking Chartership or Certification, or you are thinking about doing so, you can join our thriving but informal WhatsApp group. We offer information and advice in a friendly and supportive group.

We can offer advice on the benefits of Professional Registration, getting help started, finding a mentor, accessing the Professional Knowledge and Skills Base (PKSB), reflective writing and meeting the criteria.

To find out more please email slgconnect @

Reading the Planet: Libraries in a Changing ClimateSheffield /16-18 SEP 2022

YLG Conference returns in the real and in the virtual

Following COP26 the conference theme could not be more topical. Young people’s activism around the environment, climate change and more generally on societal change, gives us all hope for the future.

YLG will be offering a virtual programme for those who cannot travel/afford the full conference. Those who sign up for the live conference will be able to access the virtual sessions for free.

Find out more:

The Best LGBT Novels for Young Adults – recommended by Cassie Kemp

Good books for teens and young adults are often about identity and figuring out who you are. Novels with LGBTQ+ characters are some of the best examples of (fictional) young people learning to be themselves while navigating the world.

Cassie Kemp is a librarian with Creative Learning Services in Leicestershire. She is a CILIP Carnegie and Kate Greenaway Judge and is a former committee member of CILIP SLG. Here she shares her top picks of LGBT novels for teens and young adults with Tuva Kahrs.

The Best LGBT Novels for Young Adults

Best Verse Novels for 8-12 Year Olds – recommended by Alison King

Verse fiction gets to the heart of a story without much text, the immediacy of the characters and the storyline making it instantly appealing to readers, including reluctant ones.

Alison King, school librarian and committee member of CILIP SLG, explains to Tuva Kahrs why everyone should read verse novels, and recommends her top picks for 8-12 year olds.

Best Verse Novels for 8-12 Year Olds

Webinar: Registration now open

Friday 24th June 2022 – Evaluating and Auditing Your School Library

The SLG Committee have put together another fantastic Webinar on Friday 24 June 2022, just in time for those end of year tasks. Evaluating and Auditing Your School Library will give you the knowledge and tools you need to:

  • undertake a demographic survey and diversity audit to ensure your collection meets everyone’s needs
  • evaluate your impact to provide useful information for your annual report
  • make your findings look amazing using Canva.

The day finishes with conversation from Puneet Bhandal, author of Starlet Rivals, and Shiko Nguru, author of Mwikali and the Forbidden Masks, with thanks to Lantana Publishing. Read more here.

The webinar will run from 8.55 – 16.00 hours. Costs are £22+VAT for members and £30+VAT for non-members. Please see the CILIP website for further details, including suggested PKSB links, and to book.

Intellectual Freedom: policy consultation

As a of CILIP School Libraries Group you can help us develop CILIP’s policy and supporting guidance on intellectual freedom for librarians, library workers and information professionals in all sectors by adding your feedback and knowledge to this survey. Complete the survey.

If you’re a member of a CILIP Member Network, Special Interest Group, Diversity Network or Devolved Nation help us develop CILIP’s policy and supporting guidance on intellectual freedom for librarians, library workers and information professionals in all sectors by adding your feedback and knowledge to this survey.


We were, like many librarians, concerned by the decision to cancel Simon James Green’s visit to John Fisher School. As we are eager to support the striking school staff, as well as LGBTQ staff and pupils in all schools, we feel it is time for librarians to set aside the stereotypical ‘shhh’ and make some noise!

To that end, we’d like to set up a social media buzz around LGBTQ young adult reading.

For Pride Month (June), we are creating a social media relay using the hashtag #ReadWithPride. Each school or library would post a photograph of a member of staff reading an LGBTQ young adult novel (we will coordinate to ensure a variety of titles), then ‘tag’ the next school so that a post goes out every working day in June.

Ideally, those depicted in the photograph would include a range of roles to show wider-spread engagement with LGBTQ fiction, some Heads, sport staff, or even school Pride Societies (GDPR permitting!) in order to really underline the institutional support, and that this is important for everyone. But of course, we’d love to feature librarians, too! We are also asking high profile LGBT authors to join in.

If you’d like to be involved in the relay, please fill out this form by 5pm on Monday 16 May:

And if you’d rather not be part of the formal relay but would like to support the project, please use the hashtag #ReadWithPride while posting Pride Month book recommendations and/or messages of support, ‘like’ or share the relay posts, etc. Some may choose to make explicit reference to recent events or use the #IStandWithSimon hashtag. Given that some schools may prefer not to take a formal stance, or the potential for doxing or trolling on social media, we have not included this but left it down to the individual. Please feel free to tweak the message as you wish.

We will be back in touch with the relay plan w/c 22/5. If you have any questions, please email Kate O’Connor at

From Helen, Kate, Alice and Katie.