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Programming Policy

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Library Programming Policy

The Prendergast Library schedules, develops, and presents a wide variety of programs that provide opportunities for access to information, lifelong learning, and collaboration. Programs are intended to further the mission of the library and are consistent with the library’s core values and Strategic Plan. Programs should enhance, support and fulfill the library’s strategic goals and objectives.’

Programs offer opportunities to highlight library materials, resources, and services and to share information and expertise. They are effective vehicles for outreach, allowing the library to forge partnerships with external groups. Programs support the library’s role as a civic gathering place, increase public awareness of the library, and attract regular and new users of all ages and backgrounds.

Ultimate responsibility for programming at the Library rests with the Library Director, who administers programming under the authority of the Board of Trustees. The Library Director delegates the authority for program development and management to appropriate staff.

Library staff use the following criteria in making decisions about program topics, presenters, and related materials and resources:

• Community needs and interests
• Availability of program space
• Availability of Library staff
• Presentation quality
• Presenter background/qualifications in content area
• Budget
• Historical or educational significance
• Connection to other community programs, exhibitions or events
• Relation to Library collections, resources, exhibits and programs

All Library programs are open to the public. Registration may be required for planning purposes or when space or supplies are limited.

The library presents programs for various age groups. Programs may be available for a general audience of all ages, or be tailored to an age-specific audience. For age-specific programs, registration and participation may be restricted to the targeted age group to ensure availability, patron safety, and the ability to achieve the goals of the program.

For programs with children ages 8 and under, a parent, guardian, or caregiver above the age of 14 must be present and actively supervising young children to ensure children’s safety and appropriate behavior in the library. Children over the age of 8 who cannot adhere to the library’s Rules of Conduct must also be directly supervised by a parent, guardian, or caregiver, regardless of their age.

Library staff are responsible for running programs, providing instruction, and maintaining the program space; library staff cannot directly supervise young children, ensure safety, or provide behavior
intervention. Per the Library’s Child Safety Policy, parents, guardians, or caregivers are responsible for the care, safety, and behavior of children at the library.

The Library actively partners with community agencies, organizations, educational and cultural institutions, or individuals to develop and present co-sponsored public programs. Programs are not used for commercial, religious, or partisan purposes or for the solicitation of business.

Professional performers and presenters that reflect specialized expertise may be hired for Library programs. Performers and presenters will not be excluded from consideration because of their origin, background, or views. No program shall be permitted that endangers patrons, staff, Library facilities, or otherwise interferes with Library operations.

External organizations or individuals partnering with the Library on programs must coordinate marketing efforts with the Library’s staff and secure staff approval before distributing any promotional materials. The Library reserves the right to revise and edit any copy provided by a program presenter as appropriate for the Library’s various promotional outlets.

The Library’s meeting rooms are available to the public for non-sponsored events. Use of a meeting room does not constitute a Library program and does not constitute Library endorsement of said event. Non-sponsored programs and events do not fall under the Library Programming Policy and are instead subject to the Library’s Meeting Rooms Policy.

The Library welcomes the public’s opinions and suggestions for Library programs. These suggestions or opinions should be communicated to Library staff via info@prendergastlibrary.org.

The Library’s philosophy of open access to information and ideas extends to Library programming. Library sponsorship of a program does not constitute an endorsement of opinions expressed by participants or speakers.

Approved by the James Prendergast Library Board of Trustees 12/15/2022