I'm liveblogging again from the IFLA World library and Information Conference in Singapore, in the session on Civic Literacies. It starts with Information for civic literacies: an educational priority for school librarians in France from Didier Vin-Datiche (Ministry of National Education, Paris, France). It is presented in French, with no simultaneous translation and I am finding listening in French and blogging in English a bit challenging, so this is a brief report. In France, schools have an obligation to teach citizenship, and from what I can understand it sounds a more serious concept of this obligation than we have in the UK. The schools have to help students understand about culture and historical memory and their role as citizens. A new part of this is to require schools to include digital aspects of citizenshop: artistic, cultural, economic and social implications of digital information have to be understood, with education for Media and Information Literacy.
There are 3000 "professeurs documentalistes" in school libraries in France: I know that in France school librarians have more education in teaching and it seems also a better status within the school. Therefore they may be better placed than school librarians in other coubtries to take an active part in this kind of activity. The speaker referred to the importance of "la culture d'information" for the pupils, this is a translation of "information literacy" which is more holistic and wide ranging than one which stresses competences. The speaker identified the key role of the librarian both in developing the rights of the citizen to read and to access information to exercise the rights of the citizen. It seems that in France they have an interesting opportunity with this.