Stayvas takes on new role as media center specialist

by Katherine DeMarco
Three years ago she taught global perspectives. Last year she taught United States History II. This year, she is working in the library.
Former teacher Robin Stayvas has already made a mark on the library in her new position as media center specialist by adding new couches, decorations and various tables where students can gather to work together. She has also implemented a lunchtime book club. It is relatively unusual for a teacher to switch subject  areas at the high school level. However, the new job has been a fresh beginning according to Stayvas.
   
“I like it. I like the change. The first few days were quiet, and I missed the kids, but now that the year is starting to be in motion, more kids come to the library and it is becoming more of a community. I love it,” said Stayvas.
She enjoys the combination of serving students and helping with other class’s lessons.
“I like to come in early, before classes, so that I can help the students, especially if they have any problems with the computers. It’s definitely a feel-good job,” said Stayvas.
Students report that Stayvas’s warm personality, combined with her love and knowledge of
books,  makes the library an even more inviting place for students than ever before.
“She is so excited and energetic-the kind of person who loves what she does no matter what that is,” said junior Amanda Marcus, a former social studies student of Stayvas.
Stayvas’s interest in becoming a librarian was sparked by a friend whose mother worked in a library. Subsequently, Stayvas began to observe the work librarian Eunice Akerbloom, now retired, was doing in this library, as well as visiting other school libraries.
A few years ago, Stayvas decided to take action in pursuing a career as a librarian. She went back to school to be certified as a media center specialist. Accomplishing this task required Stayvas to take a year off from teaching. “It made the most sense to go to Rutgers. It was reasonably priced, close to home, and, most importantly, has one of the best library science programs in the country,” she said.
Stayvas is looking forward to making a difference in the school community. “I hope to make the library a really active and busy place. I want kids to be aware that their library is full of resources that they can use. It is a place to get help on homework and projects. It is a place to get work done. I want to keep it busy,” said Stayvas.
Social studies teacher Susan Eryan, a friend and colleague of Stayvas, expressed confidence in Stayvas’s success. “She is going to be an amazing librarian. It has only been a month and a half of school and she has already improved the face of the library, taught lesson plans with other teachers, and started a book club, not wasting any time,” said Eryan. “I’m impressed by her; she is doing a great job.”
Stayvas’s most fervent wish is for students to “come to the library! This is your space!” she said.