Materials Selection and Collection Maintenance Policy

The Adamstown Area Library is committed to:

  • Meeting the informational needs of the community
  • Meeting the recreational needs of the community
  • Promoting life-long love of learning to area residents
  • Reflecting a variety of opinions on a subject
  • Serving all people, regardless of age, race, religion, gender, physical ability or economic status
  • Presenting programs and materials which help to promote personal growth, economic self-sufficiency, optimum physical and mental health, and diverse arts and cultural opportunities.

The library serves the Borough of Adamstown, Brecknock (Lancaster) Township, Denver Borough and East and West Cocalico Township’s growing populations which are becoming increasingly diverse. With rural roots, the community is slowly changing to reflect a variety of backgrounds, interests, abilities, opinions and needs.

The Adamstown Area Library Board of Trustees accepts final responsibility for materials selection, but delegates authority to the Library Director, and under his/her direction, to the professional staff who are qualified for this activity by reason of education, training and experience.

The Adamstown Area Library endorses the Library Bill of Rights.

Materials are evaluated as a whole and not on the basis of a particular passage or passages. A work will not be excluded from the library’s collection because it presents an aspect of life honestly or because of frankness of expression.

While a simple standard cannot be applied to each potential item for selection, materials are judged by appropriate criteria. In some instances, these criteria include artistic merit, scholarship, or the value of the material to meet the informational needs of the community. In other instances, the criterion may be to meet substantial demand of the public.

General Criteria:

  • Current and anticipated needs and interests of the public
  • Accuracy of content
  • Timeliness of information
  • Author’s, artist’s or publisher’s qualifications and/or reputation
  • Evaluations in review media
  • Contribution to diversity or breadth of collection
  • Presentation of unique or controversial points of view
  • Receipt of or nomination for major awards or prizes
  • Quality of production
  • Availability and suitability of format
  • Suitability of subject, style and reading level for the intended audience

Books and other materials are periodically withdrawn because information in them is dated, because the materials are damaged beyond repair, or because they do not circulate. Space, the cost of replacement, and the appearance of the collection are factors used in decision-making. Often withdrawn items can be used in the annual book sale. Sometimes materials are replaced by identical titles, but not always. Demand and adequate coverage of a subject area are considerations when determining whether or not an item will be replaced by an identical title. Sometimes the purchase of more current literature is a more appropriate decision. (Adopted April 20, 1999)