Collection Development Policy

PURPOSE:

The Library’s material collection exists to serve the informational and recreational needs of the entire Georgetown community and to support and supplement educational programs within Georgetown. The Collection Development Policy provides guidelines for the selection and acquisition of materials. Decisions concerning how to build the collection take into account the scope of the Library’s existing collection, the availability of certain materials in regional libraries and deposit collections, Georgetown school curriculums and homework assignments, individual patron requests, available resources and the perceived needs and tastes of the community.

SCOPE OF THE COLLECTION:

The Library provides materials that address the informational, educational, recreational, and cultural needs of its users.  Materials are provided in a variety of formats, including:

  • Print – such as hardcover books, paperbacks, magazines, and newspapers
  • Non-print – such as audiobooks, music CDs, and videodiscs
  • Digital resources – such as online databases and downloadable e-books, audiobooks, and videos.

Georgetown patrons have access to the digital collection largely by virtue of our Library’s membership in the Merrimack Valley Library Consortium (MVLC). These items are provided for the use of patrons who have access to a playing device with the ability to install a software management console and then download the borrowed item.

RESPONSIBILITY:

The Library Director and designated staff members select new material for the collection using their best judgment, research skills, and professional expertise. It is the function of librarians to select new items and to withdraw outdated materials; however they must of necessity work within limitations of space and budget. Recognizing that sensitivity to the needs and interests of the community is essential to the development of library collections, the Georgetown Peabody Library actively welcomes patron suggestions and recommendations.

COLLECTIONS:

CHILDREN’S COLLECTION: The children’s collection serves children through grade six and parents, teachers, and others who work with children.  The collection focuses on materials that develop reading ability, inform children about the world around them, stimulate the imagination, and entertain.  The collection is balanced between popular titles and core materials suitable for the varied interests and reading levels of their audience. 

TEEN COLLECTION: The teen collection serves teens in grades seven through twelve. The bulk of the collection consists of hardcover and paperback fiction as well as graphic novels, manga, and magazines. The main purpose of this collection is to serve the educational, developmental and recreational needs of this population while serving as a stepping stone from the children’s collection to the adult collection.

ADULT COLLECTION: The adult print and media collection is a browsing collection geared toward the recreational and educational needs of the general adult population in Georgetown.

SELECTION CRITERIA:

The Library considers all acquisitions, whether purchased or donated, in terms of one or more of the following:

  • Level of funding for materials
  • Local demand
  • Authority and accuracy
  • Availability of shelf space
  • Contemporary significance or permanent value of the material
  • Relative importance in comparison to existing materials on the same subject
  • Availability through other sources, particularly the Merrimack Valley Library Consortium
  • Recommendations from library users and general public

SELECTION AID:

The following sources are representative of the many aids used for selection of materials:

PROFESSIONAL JOURNALS: Booklist, Library Journal, New York Times Book Review, Publishers Weekly, Boston Globe, Hornbook, Kirkus, School Library Journal, and VOYA.

OTHER: Bestseller lists, Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Baker & Taylor, and other popular print and broadcast media sources.

RECONSIDERATION:

The Library is willing to re-examine its position on any item in the library’s collection. Patrons asking for the withdrawal of library material, or questioning the purchase of any item may submit a Reconsideration Form to the Library Director. An inquiry will be brought up at the next Board of Library Trustees’ meeting. The decision of the Board of Library Trustees and Library Director will be final.

DONATIONS:

The Library accepts donations with the understanding that they will be evaluated with the same criteria used for purchased materials. If they do not meet these standards, they will be conveyed to the Friends of the Library for the library book sale.

The Friends of the Library observe the following guidelines with book donations:

  • Please bring your donations during library hours. Do not leave donations outside or in the book drop.
  • Books should be gently used, clean, and free from mold.
  • Phone books, encyclopedias, outdated computer manuals, Readers Digests, or VHS tapes will not be accepted.

MEMORIAL GIFTS:

A memorial gift is created when money or material is donated to add books or other materials to the collection, usually in memory or honor of an individual or group. The Library welcomes suggestions for purchases, but reserves the right to the final decision regarding all materials. A memorial may be placed in the library collection, either for reference or circulating use. The Library will insert a memorial bookplate for memorial items.

COLLECTION MAINTENANCE:

In order to maintain a vital, current collection which meets the needs of the community, the examination of materials is an ongoing process. An item is considered for removal when it is:
• Obsolete or outdated
• Worn or damaged
• No longer circulating or used for reference purposes
• One of many copies of a formerly popular title

A work chosen to be withdrawn may be replaced with another copy of the same title or another work on the same subject.

Approved by the Library Board of Trustees on 3/9/2016.