Collection Policy



The purpose of this Collection Policy is to:

  • Document collection management policies, procedures and responsibilities
  • Guide library staff in the selection of library materials
  • Establish a framework for continuous collection evaluation and improvement
  • Inform the public of the philosophy of collection development and the policies involved


Statement on Intellectual Freedom

The Library Board of Trustees and staff affirm that all libraries are forums for information and ideas and inherent to intellectual freedom. Community District Library hereby adopts the American Library Association Library Bill of Rights, The Freedom to Read Statement and the Freedom to View Statement.



Securing funds for materials is included in the Library’s annual budget process, completed by the Library Board of Trustees and the Director.


Responsibility for Selection

Ultimate responsibility for material selection rests with the Library Director who operates under the policies established by the Library Board of Trustees. Library Branch Managers oversee the selection process for their individual branch locations. The Administrative Office Manager provides support for Branch Managers in selecting materials. Selected materials meet the criteria within the Collection Development Policy. Branch Managers are responsible for choosing, replacing and deselecting materials that reflect community demand and library service roles. 


Criteria for Selection

Branch Managers use professional judgment and expertise in making selection decisions. Materials for the library collection are chosen for a wide variety of reasons such as information, self-education, and the recreational pursuits of library users. To build a collection of merit, materials are evaluated according to the following criteria. An item need not meet all of these criteria in order to be acceptable.

Children's materials are purchased by the same general principles that govern selection of adult materials. Responsibility for the choice of reading material for minors rests with their parents or guardians. Selection of materials for the library collection is not restricted by the possibility that minors may obtain materials their parents consider inappropriate, nor are children limited to the children's collection.


Content Criteria

  • Accuracy of the information
  • Comprehensiveness
  • Enduring value and/or interest
  • Presentation and readability
  • Representative of diverse points of view
  • Authoritativeness
  • Quality


General Criteria for Print Material

  • Current and anticipated needs and interests of the community
  • Requests by the public
  • Cost in relation to use and/or enhancement to the collection
  • Relation to existing collection and other
  • Support of library programs and initiatives
  • Suitability of subject and style for a public library
  • Availability elsewhere through cooperative borrowing arrangements


Additional Criteria for Non-Print Material

  • Cost
  • Ease of use
  • Equipment, training and technology requirements
  • Access to retrospective information
  • Quality and suitability of format to collection
  • Availability of the information to multiple, concurrent users
  • Enhancement of the print equivalents in terms of speed, flexibility and full- text
  • Reduction of space requirements over print products


Description of the Selection Process

Librarians rely on a number of tools for making selection decisions. Sources may include but are not limited to:

  • Evaluations in review media including authoritative review journals and popular magazines
  • Reviews from a variety of sources
  • Publisher and vendor catalogs and advertisements
  • Professional and/or trade bibliographies
  • Patron requests and recommendations
  • Circulation or database usage statistics


Description of the Deselection Process

Collection withdrawal is an important aspect of collection development. When library materials lose value by which they are selected they should be withdrawn so that the collection remains vital and useful. Evaluation to withdraw materials is based on the following criteria:

  • Elimination of outdated materials
  • Materials no longer of interest or in demand
  • Unneeded duplicate copies
  • Worn or mutilated material
  • Frequency of circulation
  • Community interest
  • Availability of newer or more valid materials
  • Availability of material in digital formats


Gifts of Library Materials

The Library accepts gifts of library materials, but reserves the right to evaluate and to dispose of such gifts in accordance with the criteria applied to purchased materials.


Reconsideration of Library Materials

Whenever any patron objects to the presence of any library material, the complainant will be given a fair hearing. All complaints that cannot be readily resolved by staff members will be referred immediately to the Library Director, who will discuss the matter with the complainant.

If the patron wishes, they may submit the form Request for Withdrawal of Material. If it is a request for withdrawal, the Library Director will examine the item, check reviews of the item, and determine if it conforms to the standards of the materials selection policy. The Director will decide whether to withdraw, or restrict the material in question and will write to the complainant, giving the reasons for the decision. The Board of Trustees will also be notified of the complaint and of the Library Director's decision.

Materials subject to complaint shall not be removed from use pending final action. If the complainant wishes to contest the decision, they may present the complaint to the Board of Trustees. This may be done by letter or by attending a Board meeting. The Board will consider the complaint and the Director's recommendation. The written decision of the Board shall be final and shall be reported to the complainant. 5 Adopted 6/24/2013



Request for Withdrawal of Material Form.

The Community District Library attempts to serve the entire community. Selection of books and other materials is guided by community interest and demand and is grounded in the library's Collection Development Policy. A copy is available on request. If you feel that a particular item is not suitable for inclusion in the library's collection complete the form and return to any Community District Library branch.

Title ____________________________________________________

Author __________________________________________________

Publisher and Date ________________________________________

Type of material (book, video, etc.) ___________________________

Your name _____________________________Phone ____________

Address _________________________________________________

Do you represent: Yourself ______An organization:______________

Please summarize your reasons for requesting reconsideration of the work:

1. Did you read the entire work? ______ If not, what parts?

2. Are your objections based on age of the potential user or to the point of view expressed?

3. What do you believe is the theme or intent of this work?

4. Are you aware of judgments of this work by reviewers or critics?

5. What action would you like the library to take in regard to this work?

6. What work would you recommend that would, in your judgment, be more appropriate?

Adoption of American Library Association’s Library Bill of Rights

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

I. Books and other library resources should be provided for the interest, information, and enlightenment of all people of the community the library serves. Materials should not be excluded because of the origin, background, or views of those contributing to their creation.

II. Libraries should provide materials and information presenting all points of view on current and historical issues. Materials should not be proscribed or removed because of partisan or doctrinal disapproval.

III. Libraries should challenge censorship in the fulfillment of their responsibility to provide information and enlightenment.

IV. Libraries should cooperate with all persons and groups concerned with resisting abridgment of free expression and free access to ideas.

V. A person’s right to use a library should not be denied or abridged because of origin, age, background, or views.

VI. Libraries that make exhibit spaces and meeting rooms available to the public they serve should make such facilities available on an equitable basis, regardless of the beliefs or affiliations of individuals or groups requesting their use. 


Adoption of American Library Association’s Freedom to Read Statement

  1. It is in the public interest for publishers and librarians to make available the widest diversity of views and expressions, including those which are unorthodox or unpopular with the majority.
  2. Publishers, librarians, and booksellers do not need to endorse every idea or presentation contained in the books they make available. It would conflict with the public interest for them to establish their own political, moral, or aesthetic views as a standard for determining what books should be published or circulated.
  3.  It is contrary to the public interest for publishers or librarians to determine the acceptability of a book on the basis of the personal history or political affiliations of the author.
  4. There is no place in our society for efforts to coerce the taste of others, to confine adults to the reading matter deemed suitable for adolescents, or to inhibit the efforts of writers to achieve artistic expression.
  5. It is not in the public interest to force a reader to accept with any book the prejudgment of a label characterizing the book or the author as subversive or dangerous.
  6. It is the responsibility of publishers and librarians, as guardians of the people’s freedom to read, to contest encroachments upon that freedom by individuals or groups seeking to impose their own standards or tastes upon the community at large.
  7. It is the responsibility of publishers and librarians to give full meaning to the freedom to read by providing books that enrich the quality and diversity of thought and expression. By the exercise of this affirmative responsibility, they can demonstrate that the answer to a bad book is a good one, the answer to a bad idea is a good one.


Adoption of American Library Association’s Freedom to View Statement

  1. It is in the public interest to provide the broadest possible access to films and other audiovisual materials because they have proven to be among the most effective means for the communication of ideas. Liberty of circulation is essential to insure the constitutional guarantee of freedom of expression.
  2. It is in the public interest to provide for our audiences, films 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.
  3. It is our professional responsibility to resist the constraint of labeling or pre-judging a film on the basis of the moral, religious or political beliefs of the producer or filmmaker, or on the basis of controversial content.
  4. It is our professional responsibility to contest vigorously, by all lawful means, every encroachment upon the public's freedom to view.