School Library Collection Development

  • School Library Mission Statement
    Chapel Hill-Carrboro City Schools’ Librarians strive to inspire life-long learners who love reading, are information-literate, and are critical thinkers who can ethically use a wide range of information sources and technologies.

    CHCCS School Library Media Coordinators work with teachers and administrators to provide equitable access to library materials within a stimulating, supportive, and flexible learning environment. SLMC’s collaborate with other educators to design learning experiences that infuse multiple literacies and 21st century skills.

    CHCCS libraries provide library resources and library services that support and enrich the curricular activities of our students and staff and can be accessed by all patrons. Our purchasing decisions are guided by the need to provide our libraries with materials in a variety of formats that:

    • Encourage recreational/personal reading among students
    • Support research activities
    • Assist in the creation of information products
    • Are developmentally appropriate for students
    • Facilitate the professional learning of our faculty

    Selection Objectives 
    The objective of the library media center is to make available to faculty and students a collection of materials that will enrich and support the curriculum and meet the needs of the students and faculty served. Students will be provided with a wide range of educational materials on all levels of difficulty and in a variety of formats, with diversity of appeal, allowing for the presentation of many different points of view. Library materials will be selected to meet individual learning needs, abilities, and learning styles, provide background materials to supplement classroom instruction, and include a broad range of materials on controversial issues to help students develop critical analytical skills. 

    Selected materials will support the educational objectives and local instructional initiatives of the Chapel Hill – Carrboro City Schools (CHCCS), the goals of the North Carolina Standard Course of Study (NCSCOS) and of the Common Core Curriculum in Math and English Language Arts. We will uphold the principles of the Instructional Technologies Division of the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction (NCDPI) and the CHCCS Media Resources Department.

    In particular, we will remain mindful of the following CHCCS policy codes:
    • 3000: Goals and Objectives of the Educational Program
    • 3100: Curriculum Development
    • 3200: Selection of Educational Resources
    • 3210: Inspection and Objection to Instructional Materials
    • 3230/7330: Copyright Compliance
    Policy 3200 states: The CHCCS “Board of Education further recognizes the rights inherent in the First Amendment of the constitution of the United States and supports the principles of intellectual freedom expressed in the Library Bill of Rights and in Access to Resources and Services in the School Library Media Program, An Interpretation of the Library Bill of Rights.”

    We are also committed to the principles of intellectual freedom as described in Information Power: Guidelines for School Library Media Programs and other position statements on intellectual freedom from the ALA and the AASL.

    Responsibility for Selection
    The CHCCS School Board, according to Policy Code 3200: Selection of Educational Resources, is legally responsible for “providing education resources which will enrich and support the curriculum while improving literacy and technological skills.” Responsibilities for actual selection shall rest with appropriate professionally trained personnel who shall discharge this obligation consistent with the Board’s adopted selection criteria and procedures. While selection of materials involves many people, including administrators, supervisors, teachers, library media specialists, students, and even community residents, the responsibility for coordinating and recommending the selection and purchase of library media materials should rest with the certified library media personnel.

    Types of Materials
    Library materials will consist of a wide range of educational materials on all levels of difficulty, presenting different points of view, and in a variety of formats, both print and digital, reflecting the varied interests, needs, and ability levels of the student population.

    Criteria for Selection
    The following criteria will be considered when selecting new materials, evaluating items already in the collection, or examining donations:
    • educational significance
    • the contribution the subject matter makes to the curriculum, district initiatives, and to the interests of the students
    • quality and excellence of work
    • audience and appropriateness for individual school library
    • authority of publisher and author
    • accuracy and currency of subject matter
    • reviews found in standard selection sources
    • recommendations made by professional personnel
    • format
    • cost
    Procedures for Selection
    In selecting learning resources, professional personnel will evaluate available resources and curriculum needs and will consult reputable, professionally recognized reviewing periodicals, standard catalogs, and other selection tools. The actual resource will be examined whenever possible. Recommendations for purchase are encouraged from administrators, teachers, students, district personnel, and community persons, as appropriate. Gift materials will be judged by the selection criteria and shall be accepted or rejected by those criteria. Selection is an ongoing process that should include removing materials no longer appropriate and replacing lost and worn items still of educational value.

    Procedures for De-Selection (Weeding)
    De-selection of resources is the systematic removal of items from the library collection because they are no longer appropriate for use. Reasons for weeding materials include poor physical condition; inclusion of misleading, dated, or inaccurate information; lack of circulation; and curricular changes at the school. Weeding decisions are made by certified library personnel and weeded materials are disposed of appropriately.

    Recommending a Book for Reconsideration
    CHCCS Policy Code 3210 “Inspection and Objection to Instructional Materials” states: “The Board recognizes that any resident, employee, parent or guardian, or student in the CHCCS system may express concerns about resources in the district’s educational program.” The procedure outlined in the attached Policy Code 3210 is followed by the CHCCS libraries. Complainants will complete the following Request for Reconsideration of Materials Form and submit it to the principal.

    Credits: Many thanks to Julie Paladino, Gretchen Westman, Smith Middle School, Keith Beisner, ALA, Barbara Braxton, Helen Adams, the Chicago Public Library, and the School Library Services of South Carolina for sharing their ideas about Collection Development Policies.