Professional Development > Conferences and Workshops

Conferences and Workshops
(Click here for the 2019-2020 Professional Development Series PDF)


Librarians: Facing our Challenges in Positive Ways
Doug Johnson,

Monday, May 7, 2012
10:00 am - 3:00 pm

The Gage Restaurant
Chicago, IL

Change is difficult but imperative if school library media programs are to stay relevant in the digital age. Come and learn some proven methods that will result in you and your library becoming more integral to your school's mission and in the lives of your students.

I. Dangers and Opportunities: Challenges for Libraries in the Digital Age
Many of our library “crises,” whether institutional or personal, can be tied directly to the information technology changes that have occurred in the past 20 years - changes that continue and are accelerating. Three factors that are creating a dangerous perfect storm of societal changes that will impact libraries. Only by actively addressing the challenges each of these dangers pose, will libraries survive and thrive. Seven opportunities libraries and librarians are taking advantage of to remain relevant in the digital age concludes the presentation. 
II. All Aboard! Plan and Report to Build Library Support
Program assessments generally cause far too much stress for school library media specialists. This workshop will help the participant develop and use effective program evaluations that are NOT long and tortuous and that truly help increase budgets, improve working conditions, and make the library media program essential to student learning. 
The second part of the workshop will help the participant learn how proactive, collaborative planning and reporting efforts based on needs assessments can have a tremendous impact on the support given to media program by teachers, administrators and the community. 
III. Budgeting for Mean, Lean Times
Based on a track record of building, obtaining and administering excellent library/technology budgets on both a building and district level, the presenter discusses current funding realities facing schools, gives a short primer on school district finance, describes six types of budgets, outlines the three elements of effective budgets, and suggest ways media professionals can increase their influence in the budgeting process.

Doug Johnson has been the director of media and technology for the Mankato (MN) Public Schools since 1991 and has served as an adjunct faculty member of Minnesota State University since 1990. His teaching experience has included work in grades K-12 both here and in Saudi Arabia. He is the author of six books including Teaching Right from Wrong in the Digital Age; Machines are the Easy Part; People are the Hard Part; and The Classroom Teachers Survival Guide to Technology (forthcoming). His long-running column “Head for the Edge” appears in Library Media Connection. Doug’s Blue Skunk Blog averages over 50,000 visits a month and his articles have appeared in over forty books and periodicals. He has conducted workshops and given presentations for over 130 organizations throughout the US and internationally and has held a variety of leadership positions in state and national organizations, including ISTE and AASL. For more information, visit

The Gage Restaurant 
Lower Level-Theodore Ascher Room
24 South Michigan Avenue (between Madison and Monroe)
Chicago, IL 60603
The Gage Restaurant is located in downtown Chicago on Michigan Avenue, between Madison and Monroe. Click here for directions and parking information for The Gage.

Valet parking is available at The University Club on Monroe (76 East Monroe). The University Club is 
located on the north side of Monroe Street (at the northwest corner of the street before you get to Michigan 
Avenue) and there is a green awning and a valet sign for the University Club. The cost is $20.00 per car. If 
you use the University Club valet, please let the valet know you are going to The Gage and then pay for valet 
at the restaurant.
Self-parking is available at the Grant Park Parking Garages. The closest Grant Park lot is at Grant Park North 
Garage.  For more information on the Grant Park Parking garages click here. For rates on Grant Park garages, click here.
Hotel Accommodations
Attendees must make their own hotel reservations. ISACS has secured special discounted room rates at the Hotel Indigo.  

Hotel Indigo
1244 N. Dearborn Parkway
Chicago, IL 60610

For reservations, you can book your room by clicking here with the ISACS online booking tool (The ISACS discounted rate will be calculated using this link). Or you can call the hotel directly at 312-787-4980 and request the "Independent Schools Association" rate to receive a discounted room rate.  Rates vary depending on date of stay; space and availability are limited.

Click here for directions and parking information for the Hotel Indigo.

The Hotel Indigo is about a 10-15 minute taxi ride (approx. $10) to the Gage Restaurant. If you would like other suggestions for hotels closer to the Gage Restaurant, please contact the ISACS office at 312-255-1244.

Registration Fee
$190 Member Fee
$240 Non Member Fee
First registrant pays full fee, each additional registrant receives a $20 discount
Workshop includes lunch

Cancellation Policy
Cancellations must be received in writing to ISACS by emailing 10 business days prior to the event to receive a 50% refund. Cancellations received within 10 days of the event will not receive a refund. Registration may be transferred to another member from the same school. ISACS reserves the right to cancel the workshop for insufficient enrollment. In this case, participants will be notified and given a full refund. 
Questions? Please call 312-255-1244.

Member Cost: $190     Non-member Cost: $240


55 West Wacker, Suite 701 · Chicago, IL 60601 · Telephone (312) 750-1190 · Fax (312) 750-1193
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