November 13, 2023
This policy establishes a framework by which the library collections meet the educational, informational, and recreational needs of the community. The policy gives guidance and direction for selection, development, and maintenance of a balanced collection to meet community needs with minimal barriers to access.
Both physical and digital formats are collected to best meet the diverse needs of the community. Materials are collected to a level intended to support the basic needs of the community. While some individual items may provide more advanced instruction, the collection is not intended to be an exhaustive source of information on all topics. Due to changes in technology and public demand, the formats provided are evaluated on an ongoing basis.
Collection Development Responsibility
In accordance with South Dakota Codified Law 14-2-42 (4), the Board of Trustees has delegated the authority and responsibility for selection of all materials to the Library Director. Actual selection of material rests with appropriately trained personnel who discharge this obligation consistent with the Board’s adopted selection criteria. The public may suggest materials to be considered for purchase.
Criteria for Selection
All potential selections in any format, whether purchased or donated, are considered in terms of one or more of the following criteria:
- Community demand, interest, or need
- Currency and accuracy of information
- Value or diversity of material in relation to existing collections
- Popularity and credibility of the author
- Suitability of subject, style, and format for intended audience
- Space and budgetary considerations
- Critical reviews or professional judgement
To maintain the vitality of the collection, materials are regularly weeded. The process of withdrawing materials that no longer meet the collection criteria is an integral part of collection management.
Factors involved in the decision to weed materials are:
- Availability of duplicate copies, other formats, or other material on the subject
- Poor physical condition of material
- Non-existent or low use
- Obsolete or superseded information, edition or format
- Lack of space
In compliance with South Dakota Codified Law 14-2-49, withdrawn materials will be clearly marked as “discarded” wherever the material is identified as belonging to the library. Discarded material may be traded to a vendor for future library material purchasing credits or offered to other libraries, the Friends of the Library, or nonprofit organizations.
Reconsideration of Materials
Diverse points of view, including controversial and unorthodox subjects, will be available in the collection. Inclusion in the collection does not imply the Board’s agreement with the contents. Library staff and the Board of Trustees recognize that some materials are controversial and that any given item may offend some patrons. Selections will not be made on the merits of any anticipated approval or disapproval, but solely on the merits of the work in relation to building the collection and to serving the interests of the community.
Materials are not marked or identified to show approval or disapproval and no materials are sequestered, except to protect valuable or rare items from damage or theft.
Responsibility for access to materials by children and young adults rests with their parents or legal guardians. Access is not restricted by the fact that children may obtain materials their parents or legal guardians consider objectionable.
Library staff and the Board of Trustees uphold the principles set forth in the Library Bill of Rights, the Freedom to Read Statement, and the Freedom to View Statement. The public has a right to question materials in the collection. Questioned materials remain in the active collection until an official decision is made.
Any person residing in Pennington County or who holds a current Rapid City library account may contact the Library Director or their designee to discuss concern regarding library materials. If, after discussion with library management, the patron still wishes the item be reexamined, they may submit a Statement of Concern. The library will address one Statement of Concern at a time, in the order received. Any item will be reviewed for reconsideration no more than once in three years.
An ad hoc review committee consisting of the Assistant Library Director, one Senior Librarian, and one Library Board member will be appointed within five working days of receipt of the statement of concern. The committee will review the submitted statement of concern and will evaluate the item in question, the original reasons for purchase, the collection development policy, and the opinions of various reviewing sources. The Assistant Director will report in writing to the patron the committee’s decision to retain or remove the item.
An ad hoc review committee consisting of the Assistant Library Director, one Senior Librarian, and one Library Board Policy Committee member will be appointed within five working days of receipt of the statement of concern. The committee will review the submitted statement of concern and will evaluate the item in question, the original reasons for purchase, the collection development policy, and the opinions of various reviewing sources. Within 20 working days after receipt of the statement of concern, the Assistant Director will report in writing to the patron the committee’s decision to retain or remove the item.
To appeal this decision, the patron must submit a written request for the Board to review the item. The request should be addressed to the Chair of the Board of Trustees and should be submitted to the Library Business Office in order to be added to the agenda of the next Board meeting. If a request is within five business days of a regular Library Board meeting, the matter will be heard at the next regularly scheduled Board meeting.
The Board will review the committee’s decision at the next regularly scheduled Board meeting. The person requesting reconsideration may attend the meeting, if they choose. The views of the patron may be heard by the Board, as well as the recommendation of the ad hoc review committee. The Board will issue a final decision at a subsequent regularly scheduled Library Board meeting.
Revised November 13, 2023; February 14, 2022; July 13, 2020; June 11, 2018; September 14, 2015; November 17, 2014; February 10, 2014; December 9, 2013; Reviewed December 2012; Revised October 21, 2010; August 19, 2010; June 17, 2010; September 9, 2009; March 12, 2008, May 10, 2006, December 21, 2005, March 9, 2005, February 9, 2005, November 10, 2004, September 8, 2004, August 13, 2003, December 11, 2002, August 13, 2002, February 13, 2002, July 11, 2001, December 13, 2000.