Collection Development Policy
Proposal Date: 03/11/2021
This policy (PDF) serves as a guide in the selection and retention of materials; outlines the criteria by which these decisions are made; and supports the Library’s Mission Statement.
The goals and objectives of Lakewood Public Library are based on its responsibility to serve all patrons without regard for race, gender, age, religion, education or ethnic background.
The Library will uphold the principles of the American Library Association’s Library Bill of Rights, Freedom to Read Statement, Freedom to View Statement and Expurgation of Library Material.
II. Objective of Collection
Lakewood Public Library is committed to the following objectives for its collection:
- To select, organize and make accessible to the people of the community materials which will encourage education, information and recreation.
- To work effectively with other libraries in order to meet specific needs for information, knowledge and ideas.
- To achieve maximum effect from all appropriated funds.
- To consider the entire spectrum of the Lakewood community as the Library’s user population.
- To consider library materials which are most wanted by people within the Library’s service area.
- To provide material in a variety of formats, choosing the format which best meets the criteria of accuracy, usability, user demands, efficiency and speed, under budget constraints.
III. Accessibility of Collection
Accessibility to all library materials will not be restricted, denied or prejudiced because of race, gender, age, religion, education or ethnic background.
Restriction will be avoided by allowing all patrons access to all materials and by allowing all library card holders to check out any library materials.
The distinction between the juvenile, teen and adult collections will be made on assumed differential interest patterns. Appropriateness of the materials for minors is the sole responsibility of the parent or legal guardian. Only the parents or legal guardians may restrict their children, and only their own children, from access to library materials.
IV. Responsibility for Selection
Ultimate responsibility for selection rests with the Director, who operates within the framework of policies determined by the Board of Trustees. Qualified staff members are responsible for the selection of materials in accordance with the intent of this policy.
V. Criteria for Evaluation and Selection of Materials
The overall value of each item is the chief criterion of selection. All materials are judged by trained staff with respect to:
- Community use or demand.
- Value – literary, educational, informational or recreational.
- Quality – objectivity, accuracy, literary merit and permanent value.
- Importance of the author and publisher.
- Availability elsewhere – assets of other libraries and institutions in the service area are considered to avoid unnecessary duplication of expensive and seldom used materials.
- Cost and shelving limitations.
- Different Viewpoints – materials representing different viewpoints will be made available. Resources will not be excluded because of the race, gender, age, religion, education, ethnic background or other characteristics of the author.
- Format – additional format criteria are considered when selecting digital content, including: accessibility; ease of use; equipment, training and technology requirements; license agreement requirements and vendor support; unique content.
Selection will not be inhibited by the possibility that materials may inadvertently come into the possession of children.
Sources for selection decisions encompass, but are not limited to, published reviews from standard review sources, publisher/vendor catalogs, professional and trade bibliographies, and patron requests and recommendations.
C. Patron Requests
The Library actively encourages patrons to make suggestions regarding either the materials already in the collection or materials recommended for inclusion. Patrons may request items that the Library does not own. Each request is reviewed for inclusion in the collection. If we are unable to acquire a requested item for our own collection we will try to borrow it from another library through interlibrary loan.
Interlibrary loans are available at no cost to patrons. Decisions for inclusion will be based upon the same criteria used for evaluating other titles.
Suggestions may be submitted by speaking with a staff member at either library location or online via the “Request an Item” form available on the Library’s website.
D. Local Authors
Lakewood Public Library supports local authors by including their works in the collection. When local authors submit their works for consideration, the appropriate collection development staff member reviews the material. Additional copies may be purchased based upon existing evaluation criteria.
E. Local History
The local history collection consists of sources pertaining to the people, history and culture of Lakewood, Ohio. The Library purchases copies of local high school yearbooks for inclusion in the local history collection.
Additional copies of materials will be purchased if demand is indicated or anticipated. One indication of a need for duplicates is multiple pending requests for an item.
VI. Collection Maintenance
Systematic removal of materials is essential to maintaining the quality of the collection. Responsibility for weeding the collection rests with qualified staff members assigned to the Library’s collection development team.
Materials are continuously withdrawn from the collection based on space, physical condition, circulation frequency, currency, format and accuracy.
Materials withdrawn from the Library collections will be given to the Friends of Lakewood Public Library unless cancelled for condition.
The Library welcomes donations. Donated material will be judged on the same basis as purchased materials. Donations are accepted with the explicit understanding that the items may be retained or disposed of at the discretion of the Library.
Donated items not retained by the Library will be given to the Friends of Lakewood Public Library for sale or distribution.
In the event that a patron has a concern about library materials, staff will refer the patron to a manager. Managers are available to explain the Library’s policies regarding the collection.
If the patron’s concern is not satisfied through discussion with a manager, the patron can submit a written request that the material be reviewed by the Director. The Director will review the material and reply to the patron. If the patron is not satisfied with the Director’s response, the patron then may request that the item be reviewed by the Board of Trustees, whose decision is final. All written complaints must be submitted using the Request for Reconsideration of Library Material form.