School Librarian of the Year 2019

The School Librarian of the Year Award is the School Library Association’s prestigious honour to recognize the excellent work that is carried out in school libraries every day and highlight the best practice of those whose work is outstanding. Three exciting and innovative librarians have made it onto to the Honour List for the SLA School Librarian of the Year Award 2019.

Ros Harding

Head Librarian and Archivist at The King’s School Chester (,  an independent selective school for 3-18 year olds), Ros Harding contributes in many ways to the life of the school and to the wellbeing of its students and staff.  She was described variously as  “caring, for people but also for the library itself”, “inspiring curiosity” and a “tour de force”.  As well as establishing a School Book Award, Ros is an excellent ambassador of research skills and ensures all aspects of the school to have a place within the library.  She empowers pupils and gives outstanding support and pastoral care.

Chantal Kelleher

Learning Resource Centre Manager at Herne Bay High School, (, an above-average-sized, mixed, non-selective Secondary academy), Chantal Kelleher, is dedicated to developing a whole school approach to reading and information literacy, ensuring the LRC is a vibrant and colourful hub at the centre of the school. From filming staff reciting poems to creating book-filled goody bags for transition students, via the LGBT pupil group she supports and her innovative use of the library to support different departments in the school, it is clear that Chantal has great passion for promoting the LRC with creativity and flair.

Helen Cleaves

Librarian/Learning Resources Manager at Kingston Grammar School (, an independent, co-educational day school), Helen Cleaves has an impact which extends well beyond the library doors. From welcoming new staff with a breakfast croissant and liaising closely with pastoral staff through to promoting academic rigour at Head of Department meetings, Helen is utterly committed to ensuring that the library is welcoming, relevant and purposeful. Innovative reading promotions including establishing the school’s first Poet Laureate and regularly producing The Guilty Librarian podcast .

The work of these inspirational librarians will be celebrated at a ceremony  on 27 June 2019 at the at the Millennium Gloucester Hotel, Kensington, London Kensington where 2019 YA Book Prize winner Sara Barnard will announce the SLA School Librarian of the Year 2019.

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