My name is Senga White and I am a Research and Learning Coordinator at Southland Boys High School, a Year 7-13 school in Invercargill, New Zealand. In this role I not only manage the library services but am working towards embedding information literacy and research skills into the teaching programme. I have worked in the school library sector since 2000 and was previously the library manager for James Hargest College for 12 years.
As part of this professional journey I have also developed the Tertiary Prep Programme which is designed to enable those wishing to be successful in learning beyond secondary school to achieve and succeed. This is worth considering for Year 13 students to help with their transition from secondary to tertiary learning, those who have had a break from student and wish to resume, including distance learners, and adults who have never studied beyond school but are now considering further study.
My work is my passion! As well as being the “library queen” (as described to her class by one of my English colleagues) and the “research expert”, as a life-long reader and lover of books, I also love to match readers to books they’ll fall in love with and also enthusiastically work collaboratively with staff to enhance their classroom lessons and planning.
My other passion is supporting the goal of having quality library services in every school in New Zealand, staffed by equally passionate, enthusiastic library staff who love working with children and teenagers. This is why I was a member on the National Executive of SLANZA (School Library Association of New Zealand Aotearoa) for seven years, including a term as president from 2009 to 2011. My philosophy is it’s all about collaboration, brainstorming and putting your “money where your mouth is!”
I served as the schools’ representative on the EPIC Governance Group (EGG) from 2007 to 2014. EPIC (Electronic Purchasing in Collaboration) is the national e-licensing initiative that makes a package of electronic resources available to all New Zealanders through libraries who are consortium members. The EPIC Governance Group (EGG), comprised of ten library sector representatives, was responsible for the strategic direction of EPIC and guided the operation of the consortium.
I am a professionally registered librarian and have just completed a three term as a member of the LIANZA (Library and Information Association of New Zealand Aotearoa) Profession Registration Board.