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Montana Library Association issues resolution supporting library professionalism

The move comes in response to the Montana State Library Commission approving a proposed rule to eliminate graduate degree requirements for directors at the state's largest libraries.
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Posted at 8:08 AM, Nov 15, 2023
and last updated 2023-11-15 10:08:54-05

BOZEMAN — The Montana Library Association (MLA) has issued a resolution reaffirming support for library professionalism after the state’s library commission voted to eliminate a degree requirement for directors of Montana’s largest libraries.

Under the proposed rule by the Montana State Library Commission, directors at libraries serving more than 25,000 people would no longer be required to hold a graduate degree in library or information science, as is currently the case.

Libraries that hire a director without a graduate degree could stand to lose state funding, as state certification also has the degree requirement in place.

The Montana Library Association’s resolution states that getting rid of the degree requirement “has denigrated the standing of Montana’s library professionals and put the future of library services in Montana at risk.”

"Our organization is led by Montana librarians, to serve the interests of Montana libraries and library users. Despite generations of collaboration, we are deeply concerned that the Commission has lost its way. We passed this resolution to make clear our belief that common ground exists, and that MLA remains committed to the health and longevity of library services in Montana,” Kelly Reisig, President of the Montana Library Association stated in a press release.

The MLA also outlined its key priorities as (1) professional development, (2) a community of support for libraries, and (3) legislative advocacy.

You can read the full resolution from the MLA here: