Perspectives: Local

Vol. 14 No. 2 (2016)

Flipping the Third Space

May 3, 2019


In March 2011 Australia’s House of Representatives Committee on Education and Employment submitted a report on school libraries in Australia (Australia & Rishworth, 2011). The report consists of comments and recommendations about what school libraries in Australia could be like and what issues they face. In preparing to submit a statement to the committee, I engaged in conversation with my Head of School, Mr Peter Crawley, about our library. He understood that the bustling library that we had did not come about on its own. He spoke of the fact that both parents and students valued such a safe space that lay between home and school.

In the half decade that has followed since the report, supporting the curriculum has been the central tenet of our approach. There is plenty of work to do resourcing and supporting teaching and learning by being informed and responsive, IT-ready and having the skills to do so. Later I will attempt to show that this supportive role is also a transformative role when it occurs in a space called a Third Space. In this respect, Elmborg (2011) attempts a summary of Henri Lefebvre’s work, ‘The Production of Space’, in which three ways of conceiving space are articulated: spatial practices, representations of space and representational spaces.

School Library Association of Victoria |