As an institution of the state of Georgia, in the county of Oconee, and in the city of Watkinsville, the vision of Oconee County Public Library is to be a place for extensive research, scholarly learning, growth, and development. We at Oconee County Library want students, children, young adults, adults, and all patrons to be able to learn and seek guidance for their studies as well as personal growth and development. We are a family-friendly type of library and have many children’s programs and activities available weekly throughout the year, including summer.
I. Type of Library/Community served:
Oconee County has a rich and creative culture in Georgia. Oconee County Public Library has a very well-educated community and people in Oconee make good use of the public library. The Oconee county library caters mainly to children and young adults in the county with a plethora of children’s books with different formats, to cater to different needs of the children in the community. The Oconee County Public Library provides extensive collections and support for other library services throughout Watkinsville, Georgia. Although we are a public library of the Athens Regional Library system, we are mainly a library that caters to youth and children with our children’s collection making up half of the library’s collection. We want children to feel welcome and our children’s librarian is available everyday weekly to help our Georgia youth. The community is important to us here at the Oconee library and we want to have children from the community involved in our programs and activities here at the library. The population of Oconee is a little over 36,000 citizens with most being white, middle-class, military or ex-military, with mainly people in middle-age through retirement age with children making up a little less than half of the amount of adults. About two-thirds of the collection contains adult materials and close to one-third of the collection is for children and young adults. Items at the library total of over 5,000 books not including eBooks. The non-fiction section contains about 2,000 books.
II. Selection/evaluation non-fiction materials:
The Oconee County Public Library’s collection contains thousands of books and other media provides patrons with a varied and large range of a majority of educational and informational materials for patrons of all ages. Collections at our library include popular and requested materials. Some of the library’s materials mainly pertaining to non-fiction include items such as large print books, required reading for schools, test and study guides, different books for the youth and adults, including books for foreign language, etc.
Formats for the selections collected include:
· Print: books, documents, magazines, and newspapers.
· Audiovisual Media: videos on DVD, books on CD and digital audio.
· Electronic Media: databases, software, electronic books, downloadable audiobooks, and the internet.
· Other: educational toys and selected audiovisual equipment.
Criteria for selecting library materials:
· Public demand and needs of patrons.
· Popular interest.
· Authority of the author.
· Relevancy to existing collections.
· Accessibility for multiple users of electronic formats.
Evaluation of materials:
The Oconee Library evaluates the materials in its collection regularly to find out if the collection meets the needs of the community, especially children and families.
· Circulation statistics.
· Frequency of use.
· Patron request for materials.
· do the materials brings valuable coverage to the collection in the subject area
Other important factors include but are not limited to:
· Reputations of the author/editor.
· Material value.
· Physical quality.
· Available space.
III. Non-fiction materials included/not included:
Physical formats of materials for non-fiction include both print and electronic nonfiction materials. The types collected include: eBooks, audiobooks, and online databases. The digital collections are smaller than the physical print of non-fiction materials. Periodicals, newspapers, and local government documents are included although limited. Foreign language and dictionaries, thesauruses, etc. are included. Biographies and autobiographies have their own section in both the children and adult/young adult sections of the library and they make up a good amount of material. All formats are included except manuscripts and textbooks, unfortunately. The system and how it’s implemented hasn’t affected the budget thus far.
IV. Weeding guidelines for nonfiction:
· Titles outside the collecting guidelines/policy of the library
· Titles no longer relevant to research needs and not relevant to the library’s collection will be removed.
· Titles with out-of-date or inaccurate information.
· Individual titles containing information found somewhere else in the collection.
· Materials rarely used.
· Materials in poor physical condition. Deteriorating books are withdrawn when needed.
V. Procedures for challenges to non-fiction:
The following procedures are for when a citizen or library patron has concerns about the non-fiction materials in the library collection
a. The concerned patron is offered the opportunity to discuss his/her concern with the Library Director and/or the librarian responsible for the selection.
b. If the patron is not satisfied and wishes to pursue the issue, they will submit a written Request for Reconsideration of Library Materials form.
c. When the completed Request for Reconsideration form is received by the Library Director, it’s further reviewed by the Library Director, the librarian in charge of the collection area, another librarian, and a Library Board member. The Library Director will respond. The Library Board becomes notified of the complaint.
d. If the issue is still not solved, the complaint will go to the Library Board of Trustees. The American Library Association may get involved. The Board will respond to the patron with the reasons supporting their decision within a month’s time or less.