IFLA SL Newsletter

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The status of the Resource Centres CDI in France

By Vincent Liquète, Professor and researcher at the IUFM of Bordeaux

Since the middle of the eighties, the French Educational System has progressively confirmed a certain willingness to implement, and then reinforce, information search activities in high schools, colleges and technology colleges (pupils from 11-18 years old).

A secondary school teaching diploma(Certificat d’Aptitude au Professorat de l’Enseignement du Second degré CAPES) has been formed in information research science and techniques, permitting the installation of the teacherlibrarian in the local public educational system EPLE) . From this time, the teacher librarian has the status of educator and his field of responsibility is mainly confined to four domains:

1. He assures the introduction and training of the pupils in information retrieval in the CDI of which he is responsible. New educational mechanisms have been put in place (Civil, judicial and social education, supervised personal work, cross-disciplinary projects with vocational attributes…), and the teacherlibrarian is thus included in the search for information, in the organisation of the pupil’s work and training in critical and analytical reading of the documents.

2. He is closely related to educational activities and projects in the educational institution. He collaborates with the teacher of each discipline to implement and supervise pedagogic projects.

3. He takes part in the activities and assures an open institution, connecting the school to cultural facilities (museums, libraries, cultural spaces…) as well as economic structures.

4. Finally, he is responsible for the management of the CDI and for the access to the multimedia resources. The appearance of the digital environments in the first information system of the EPLE, leads the teacher-librarian to consider the organization of electronic documents in association with the collection of documents on paper.

At the same time, on a national level, a content and resource policy is being established, supporting various Partnerships in conventional and digital publishing, notably by the strengthening of certain strategic networks of pedagogic and professional information (such as Scéren-Centre National de Documentation Pédagogique (www.cndp. fr, www.savoirscdi.cndp.fr), Instituts Universitaires de Formation des Maîtres (www.iufm.fr) or Institut National de Recherche Pédagogique (www.inrp. fr)). On a local level, the political institutions have participated in this dynamic by constructing or restoring the Resource Centres (CDI) in the educational institutions, by supporting the implantation of information technology through various donations, and by connecting to networks and regional computer systems.

However, important questions concerning the use of information and documents have emerged the last months. The first traces of an answer seem to be emerging.

On the one hand, the educational institutions approach information search activities not only in CDI’s, but throughout the entire institution. The most important challenge to the French school library system is to imagine an “institutional information policy” that includes the CDI as an element of construction. On the other hand, there is the question of the integration of educational electronic resources linked to and in communication with traditionally supported documents (paper, optical, magnetic). Electronic documents are still complementary to traditional documents and bring about numerous questions regarding economy, access, organisation and structure. Lastly, the question of learning search activities is discussed. The educational mechanisms spoken of earlier illustrate the approach to the subject. The numerous steps taken are the results of the teacher-librarian’s effort more than a supported institutional approach. Several teacher-librarians seem to wish expand from a simple introduction and give the pupils a more elaborate education within the culture of information.

January 14, 2007 Posted by | 2. Issue 42, 3. Theme:42: SL-education, France | Leave a comment