Continuing Education News

Conferences for Illinois Parents of Children with Vision Loss

Two upcoming conferences hosted by the Illinois Department of Human Services focus on common issues experienced by families affected by vision loss. Parents of children (newborn through 21 years of age) are invited to attend discussions and learn from experts and parents. Session topics include Teens and Technology, School Adaption, Parent Discussion Round Tables, and Apps for Vision Loss. Conference dates are Saturday, March 14, 2015 in Mount Vernon and Saturday, April 11, 2015 in Rockford.

Families may be eligible for funding assistance through Arc of Illinois and STARNET. (See the conference flyer for details on how to apply.) Teachers and Service Providers are welcome to attend (EI and CPDU credits are offered). Childcare is not provided, and children must be 12 years old to attend. ADA accommodations are available.

Please see for more information, including the conference flyer/registration form.

Rose Chenoweth, Director, Talking Books, will lead small group discussions at both events. Please visit for more information on the Illinois Talking Book Outreach Center.

Call for Proposals for Wisconsin Library Association's Conference in May 2015

The Wisconsin Library Association would like to inform RAILS members about planning efforts for the 2015 Wisconsin Library Association (WLA) Support Staff and Circulation Services One-Day Professional Development Conference. The conference will be held Thursday, May 28, 2015 at the Beloit Public Library. The theme is, “SSCS--Your Gateway to Library Success.”

The conference planning committee is now accepting proposals and recommendations for presentations, panels, and workshops. Suggested topics include but are not limited to: technology, managing difficult patrons, training student workers, using and circulating e-readers, bridging the generational divide, stress reducers, customer service, etc.

Successful presentations should be approximately 45 minutes, include 10-15 minutes for questions and answers, showcase effective and innovative practices, and be applicable to many types of libraries. Presenters should submit their proposal electronically at: by Saturday March 14, 2015. Presenters will be notified of acceptance by April 1, 2015.

Please send questions about proposals and submissions to Tina Kakuske at tkakuske [at] beloitlibrary [dot] org. A complete listing of speakers, agenda, and costs will be released in mid-April.

Save the Date Flyer

Genealogy Without Fear: Taking the Foolishness Out of Family Trees

Genealogy research is no April fool's joke.  Genealogy reference questions can be intimidating, especially for the non-genealogist.  RLA-CE will be hosting reference librarian and genealogy specialist Carol Bartlett who will walk you through getting patrons started with their genealogical inquiries.  Learn to navigate the most common and useful genealogy tools with confidence to send your patrons on the right road to answers.

After the program, there will be an optional tour of the newly-renovated Ela Area Public Library.

  • Wednesday, April 1, 2015
  • 9:30 am-12:00 pm
  • Ela Area Public Library
  • 275 Mohawk Trl.
  • Lake Zurich, Illinois
  • Rooms A and B
  • Register at

Digital Media Lab Summit April 17

What's on the agenda?

How about this for starters: What's working? What ain’t? What's your favorite tech and why? What tech would you like to weed? What promotions, classes, programs, and events bring in the numbers? Recent accomplishments (good and/or bad)? Share all our qualitative and quantitative statistics (e.g. classes, software, hardware, etc.) to compare how we should document success (and, um, less success). Future plans.

Jacobsen and Fisher will also share 10 things they wished they'd known before starting a DML. What's on your list?

And whatever YOU want to discuss (think unconference)! Bring your questions. Bring your knowledge. Together we can all benefit from the experience and creative solutions from everyone who gathers at this Summit. Join us and share what’s important to you and your DML community.

This will take place at the Fountaindale Public Library. Register at Space is limited!