Collection Development Policy

A. General Statement:


The library shall build a collection of books and non-books material to achieve library objectives and to meet the expressed and potential needs of periodicals, pamphlets, newspapers, pictures, slides, films, music scores, maps, recordings, and microfilms and filmstrips.

The library shall have access to materials representing varied viewpoints in the greatest possible variety of subjects. The collection should contain materials which have been selected for the library user on the basis of value and significance of the subject.

B. Criteria for Selections:

To build collections of merit and significance, materials in all forms must be measured by objective guidelines. All acquisitions, whether, purchased or donated, are considered in terms of the following standards. Clearly, however, an item need not meet all of the criteria in order to be acceptable.

  1. Suitable of physical form for library use
  2. Suitable of subject and style for intended audience
  3. Present and potential relevance to community needs
  4. Relation to existing collection and other materials on the subject
  5. Reputation and/or significance of author
  6. Attention of critics, reviews and the public
  7. Price

The following are some of the sources and tools used for reviewing all library materials

  1. Public Library Core Collection for Fiction and Non-Fiction
  2. Children’s catalogs
  3. Booklist
  4. Library journals
  5. School Library journals
  6. Various periodicals which review books such as: State Journal, Times Magazine, Newsweek, Saturday Review, Book Page
  7. Online sources such as: Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Internet Movie Database for movies, also databases such as Novelist.

C. Non-Specific Criteria

  1. Items which have widespread demand may or may not meet the general and specific criteria contained in this policy. Demand is, however, a valid factor in book selection and it shall be considered an important factor where books are on best seller lists for which there is persistent local demand.
  2. Reviews such as those mentioned above shall be used where expedient and shall be sought whenever possible, but the lack of a review or an unfavorable review shall not be the sole reason for not selecting a title which is in demand.
  3. Gifts additions must meet the same selection criteria as all purchased materials.
  4. Any judgment of a book of fiction shall be made on the total book rather than on portions of the book that might in themselves be considered objectionable.
  5. The collection in the library may contain various positions expressed on controversial or complicated questions, including unorthodox and possible unpopular positions. The library does not promote particular beliefs or views.

D. Responsibility for Selection:

The responsibility for selecting library materials rests with the Library Director, who will be operating within the framework of policies and objectives adopted by the Library Board.

Responsibility for the reading of minors rests with either their parents or legal guardian. At no time will library staff act in locos parentis.

E. Guidelines for Maintenance of Collection:

  • Duplication
    • The library will avoid, for the most part, duplication of titles. If demand is heavy, a paper duplication will be purchased whenever possible. The extent of duplications will be determined by need, budget and proximity of other collections.
    • The library will not provide multiple copies for classroom use, nor will textbooks be purchased by the library, except where a material in another form is unavailable.
  • Replacement
    • The library will not automatically replace books withdrawn because of loss, damage, or wear. The need for and replacement policy will depend upon demand for a specific title and the extent of adequate coverage in that particular subject area.
  • Gifts (See C-3)
    • The library retains the right to make the most advantageous use of materials it accepts. Gifts of books and other materials are accepted without commitment as to final disposition and with the understanding that they will not necessarily be added to the library’s collection. Donated materials may be put in the ongoing Friends book sale.
  • Mending and Rebinding
    • The retaining and keeping of all library materials in good and useable condition is essential. A decision shall be made on each book as deemed necessary: whether to mend it, rebind it, replace it or withdraw it from circulation. The following criteria shall be used in making these decisions:
      • The condition of the book
      • The validity of the book’s contents
      • The demand
      • The cost of the various choices above
      • The historical value of the material
  • Outer-Library Loan
    • Because of limited budget and space, the library cannot provide all materials that are requested’ therefore, an outer-library loan, (outside or within SCLS) shall be used to obtain from other libraries those materials which are beyond the scope of this library’s collection.

F. Disposal of Library Materials


This discarding of materials shall be the reverse of the procedure for selection. Library Materials are to be discarded for one or more of the following reasons:

  1. Worn or damaged beyond repair
  2. Outdated
  3. No longer in demand

G. Controversial Materials, Criticism and Censorship

The library affirms the following basic policies as stated in the library Bill of Rights: (Adapted June 18, 1961, June 27, 1967, January 1980, inclusion of “age” reaffirmed January 23, 1996, by the ALA Council)

The American Library Association affirms that all libraries are forums for information and ideas, and that the following basic policies should guide their services:

  1. Books and other library resources should be provided for the interest, information and enlightenment of all the people of the community the library serves. Materials should not be excluded because of the origin, background or views of the contributing to their creation.
  2. Libraries should provide materials and information presenting all points of view on current and historical issues. Materials should not be removed or proscribed because of partisan or doctrinal disapproval.
  3. Libraries should challenge censorship in the fulfillment of their responsibility to provide information and enlightenment.
  4. Libraries should cooperate with all persons and groups concerned with resisting abridgement of free expression and free access to ideas.
  5. A person’s right to use the library should not be denied or abridged because of origin, age, background, or views.
  6. Libraries which make exhibits spaces and meeting room available to the public they serve should make such facilities available on an equitable basis, regardless of the beliefs or affiliation of individuals or groups requesting their use.

Although materials are carefully selected, differences of opinion can arise regarding the suitability of books. To handle such complaints the following procedure is established:

  1. The Objector shall complete a “Reconsideration of Library Form.” This form is available at the library and must be signed by the Objector.
  2. The Librarian will then review the material and decide if is should be retained or discarded from the collection. An explanation in regard to the decision shall be made in writing to the Objector.
  3. If the Objector is not satisfied and wishes to pursue the matter further, the complaint will then go to the library board, who will make the final decision and settle the issue

H. Confidentiality of Records

The Library Board of Spring Green Community Library will not allow any release or distribution of names of patrons, their addresses or phone numbers.

The Library Board will refuse anyone (includes both individuals and groups) any circulation records which indicate any items a group or an individuals withdraws from the library.

No information will be given to any governmental authority unless a court orders it.

I. Freedom to View Statement

The Library Board of the Spring Green Community Library affirms and will support the following statements as adopted by the ALA in 1990 with regard to the “Freedom to View Statement.”

The Freedom to View, along with the freedom to speak, to hear, and to read, is protected by the First Amendment to the Constitution of the United States. In a free society, there is no place for censorship of any medium of expression. Therefore these principles are affirmed:

  1. To provide the broadest access to film, video, and other audiovisual materials because they are a means for the communication of ideas. Liberty of circulation is essential to insure the constitutional guarantee of freedom of expression.
  2. To protect the confidentiality of all individuals and institutions using film, video, and other audiovisual materials.
  3. To provide film, video, and other audiovisual materials which represent a diversity of views and expression. Selection of a work does not constitute or imply agreement with or approval of the content.
  4. To provide a diversity of viewpoints without the constraint of labeling or prejudging film, video, or other audiovisual materials on the basis of the moral, religious, or political beliefs of the producer or filmmaker or on the basis of controversial content.
  5. To contest vigorously, by all lawful means, every encroachment upon the public's freedom to view.

This statement was originally drafted by the Freedom to View Committee of the American Film and Video Association (formerly the Educational Film Library Association) and was adopted by the AFVA Board of Directors in February 1979. This statement was updated and approved by the AFVA Board of Directors in 1989. Endorsed January 10, 1990, by the ALA Council.

Adopted by the Library Board in 1989. Revised on January 13, 2009.


Reconsideration of library materials (book)


Your Name _______________________________ Today’s date ___________________

Address ________________________________ Phone___________________________



Please briefly answer the following questions about the book that you would like to have reconsidered.


1. How did you learn of this book?


2. What are your objections to this book?


3. What harm do you feel might result from reading this book?


4. Did you read the entire book? If not, what parts did you read?


5. Have you read any professional reviews of the book? If so, please list the names of critics and sources of reviews.


6. What do you think was the author's purpose in writing this book?


7. What book with a similar purpose would you suggest in place of this book?


Thank you for taking the time to fill out this form. The Library Director will respond to your concerns within 7 days of the receipt of this form.


Reconsideration of library materials (movie)



Your name: _____________________________________ Today’s date: _____________

Address: ________________________________________ Phone:__________________

Title of the movie _________________________________________________________


Please briefly answer the following questions about the movie that you would like to have reconsidered.



1. How did you learn of this movie?


2. What are your objections to the movie?


3. What harm do you feel might be the result of watching this movie?


4. Did you watch the entire movie? If not, what parts did you watch?


5. Have you read any professional reviews of the movie? If so, please list the sources of the reviews.


6. What do you believe are the main ideas of the movie and/or the filmmaker’s purpose in making it?


7. What movie with a similar purpose or opposing viewpoint would you suggest in place of this title?


Thank you for taking the time to fill out this form. The Library Director will respond to your concerns within 7 days of the receipt of this form.