An unique endeavor: the Bandana Sen Library Awards

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New Delhi: In an earnest effort to celebrate libraries and librarians, to facilitate world-class libraries across the country, OneUp Library, Bookstudio and Learning Lab launches a one-of-a-kind award—The Bandana Sen Library Awards. Envisioned in the memory of Ms. Bandana Sen, a pioneer in the field of children’s libraries and reading programs in India, BSLA aims to motivate and promote the library as a space for nurturing young students’ imagination, critical thinking abilities and the development of collaborative spiritand innovation. BSLA invites entries for excellence in best practices in nurturing learning environments to librarians and school heads from schools across the country (entries open till 20th September 2019).
BSLA envisions the ‘library’ at the heart of our school communities that catalyzes the child’s development by providing a continually evolving, dynamic and joyful environment that encourages discovery. They have a higher purpose of nourishing souls, and every child deserves a Librarian who believes in them and can help them grow their bond with books. School libraries today have the potential to not only support the school curriculum, but also be classified as collaborative learning zones that center on critical-reading activities. It is therefore imperative that we strengthen our school libraries and laud our librarians, to enable them to nurture the reading culture in our society.
Joining the cause is a committed panel of jury and advisors, who share the vision and add immense value with their areas of expertise. The erudite Jury members have enviable reputations as educational professionals and include:Abha Adams, Dr. ShabbiLuthra, Ruchira Ghosh, Peggy Sood, Dr. ShaliniAdvani,DonavonReinsmoen.

Our talented and passionate advisers are drawn from the worlds of literature, the arts and publishing and include Paro Anand, Sanjna Kapoor, Usha Pandit,Mahesh Rao,HemaliSodhi,HimaniDalmia, Kirandeep Kaur, Preeti Gill, HeeruBhojwani.

According toDalbirKaur Madan, Founder Director, OneUp Library and thedriving force behind BSLA“LaunchingBSLAwards is a huge step for us, since we are honouring Ms. Bandana Sen’s spirit and her work. For the first time in the education world, we celebrate the unsung champions: our librarians, along with our school heads, who open a world of possibilities for our children through books. Through these awards; we hope to create a road map to invigorate futuristic libraries, which can set out to become role models for others”.
The BSLAwards will be given out at a special event on 9th November 2019 at IIC, Delhi.

More about the awards
CRITERIA: These awards are available to full-time librarians /teacher- librarians in grades K-12 in the CBSE / ICSE affiliated boards in India and will be awarded to teachers/teacher librarians who:
1. Foster a passion and love of reading in students through programs and curricula that are innovative, and original.
2. Exhibit innovative practices in presenting books and literature or poetry to students in a unique way.
3. Are committed to helping reluctant readers, and are visionary in their methods of reaching out to them.
4. Are re-defining their libraries as centers of learning involved in active and engaging activities for students, teachers and the community.

THE AWARDS:This year, BSL Awards will be given to the Headof School and the Librarian/Teacher-Librarian for excellence in best practices in nurturing learning environments:
• 2 (two) INR 50,000 cash awards for use by the winning teacher – Junior Library and Middle/Senior Library, made payable to Awardee’s school
• 2 (two) Grand trophy/Recognition Certificates to the Head of School designated for programs specifically centered around reading, literacy & library presented to the Awardee’s school.
• Multi-media coverage of the first three nominations in both categories, winning teachers and schools via One Up website, press releases, and newsletters.
• BSLAwards will grant one community library a cash award of INR 25,000 to nurture their community library spaces.

About Bandana Sen
Born and raised in Darjeeling, Bandana Sen (14.09.1943 – 01.06.2018) began her career at the American International School in Calcutta. She spent close to four decades managing libraries at the American Embassy School in New Delhi and then another 12 years setting up libraries at Pathways Schools across NCR. She believed the library to be the sanctum of an educational institution, and the hub of a vibrant reading culture essential to society. During her lifetime, Ms. Sen helped create world-class libraries and reading programs across the country, nurtured a love for reading in thousands of children, while mentoring an entire generation of librarians to carry on her exemplary work.

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