Collection Development Policy


It is the policy of the River Forest Public Library to develop and maintain a collection of materials to support the following service goals: stimulate imagination, satisfy curiosity and create young readers.
This collection development policy serves to guide library staff and to inform the public of the general principles which guide the management of the library’s collections.

Responsibility for this policy rests with the Library Board of Trustees. The Library Board of Trustees endorses the American Library Association’s Library Bill of Rights and the Freedom to Read and Freedom to View Statements.

Responsibility for implementing this policy and managing the collections of the library is delegated by the Board to the Library Director and Staff.

Criteria for Selection

1. Materials will be selected with an emphasis on:

-Relevance to service goals
-Popular demand

Additional factors for consideration include:

-Input gathered from critical reviews and standard selection sources
-Shelf space
-Currency of the material
-Authority of the author or publisher
-Physical features and format

2. An effort will be made to include materials representing multiple view points . No material will be excluded because of the race, nationality, gender, religion, sexual orientation, or political or social views of the author.

3. Materials will not be excluded from the collection solely because the frankness of presentation may be offensive to some nor because the materials may not be suitable for all levels. The library will not label items with content warnings but may label items to note collection and location.

4. Appropriate materials are selected for various age groups. There are no age restrictions on the borrowing of library materials. The responsibility for monitoring library materials used by a minor rests with his or her parent or guardian.

5. Due to the quickly changing nature of technology, the library will focus on purchasing current formats of materials, with consideration for emerging formats. Collections of materials in outdated formats will not be actively developed and may be removed.

6. Due to budget and space constraints the library cannot purchase all materials available or requested. The library will participate in interlibrary loan in an effort to obtain materials for patrons that are not held within the library’s collection.

Weeding and Disposition of Library materials

A current, attractive and useful collection is maintained through the continual selection, weeding and replacement of materials. Materials in the collection are assessed on an ongoing basis. Materials may be removed from the collection due to a variety of factors including but not limited to a deteriorated appearance, inaccurate or outdated information, space constraints, unneeded duplicates, disuse, obsolete formats or lack of interest.
Materials removed from the library collection may be discarded, recycled, sold by the Friends of the River Forest Public Library, sold on the library’s book sale shelves, donated to local non-profit groups or sent to book recycling/selling organizations at the discretion of library management.

Gifts and Donations of Materials

1. Gifts or donations of books and other materials may be accepted by the library as long as these items are given unconditionally and become the property of the library.

2. The library reserves the right to add or not add a donated or gift item to the collection and to donate or dispose of the item as library management sees fit. The same criteria applied to the selection of purchased materials will also be applied to donated/gifted materials.

3. Donations of cash for Memorial/Honor books are accepted. Specific subject areas or titles may be suggested by donors. However, the final decision on specific titles will reside with library staff. Memorial/Honor books will be acknowledged with a commemorative bookplate when possible. Memorial/Honor book donation forms can be obtained from library service desks. Memorial/Honor books will not be retained in perpetuity and will be subject to the same weeding criteria as the rest of the collection.

4. It is not within the library’s purview to assess the financial value of donation or gift materials. No valuations or appraisals will be made by library staff on gifts or donations to the library.

Approved by River Forest Public Library Board of Trustees, 3/19/2013