As libraries adapt to the changing needs of society, it’s becoming increasingly important to link libraries more closely with education, said CKLS Director Harry Willems at the September meeting of the Great Bend Public Library Board of Directors Monday.
The Great Bend Public Library is doing this with a multi-faceted approach through its staff members, signage, and publicity to let people know that the library is part of the educational infrastructure of the community, Willems contacted the administration of USD 428 recently to make certain students in the school district were made aware the library is an option for those in need of a wi-fi connection.
The district recently distributed chromebooks to high school students as part of the one-to-one technology initiative. After the communication, USD 428 helped to get the word out that in addition to the wi-fi connectivity, the Great Bend Public Library has study rooms available, and librarians are seeing slow but steadily increasing use of the rooms, Willems said.
Another way the library hopes to attract more students to the library is through homework help. Willems hopes to line up tutors who can be on hand to help students with a variety of subjects. He will present more details about the potential volunteers and the vetting process at a later meeting. One potential resource, he said, may be through the Barton County Association of Retired School Personnel.
Adult Summer reading participation up
Erin Ferguson, Adult Services Supervisor, delivered the department report. This year, there were 21 adult participants in the summer reading program, up from last year. Deb Rosenberg was the grand prize winner, and received a Samsung Galaxy tablet. Rose Duval and Romona Newsome both won Kindle Fire tablets.
A crochet club began during the summer, and interest prompted Ferguson to continue it through the fall and winter. Instead of meeting on Monday mornings, however, it will meet on Monday afternoons, with the possibility of two sessions, one in the late afternoon and one at night. The group has been making purple caps for babies, part of the Period of Purple Crying campaign to raise awareness about shaken baby syndrome. Already, nearly 75 caps have been made. Each cap requires a $5 donation to the national campaign. Members of the crochet club can work on other projects too.
Ferguson and Diedre Lemon. will be making a joint presentation at the Kansas Library Association conference Oct. 20 at 2 p.m. They will be comparing and contrasting their pre- and post-MLS journeys, with an emphasis on how those journeys have made them better librarians. This year, KLA will be held in Wichita on Oct. 19-21, and the library will pay the registration fee for trustees interested in attending the conference on Wednesday, Oct. 19 to hear speaker Joan Fry Williams, who will be the welcome and keynote speaker that morning.
Other items of discussion
• The Friends of the Library Book Sale will be coming up in October. Friends will have the opportunity to attend a private sale on Oct. 8, and the public sale will open on Oct. 9 and run through Oct. 12.
• Great Bend Library Board members recognized maintenance worker Fred Hernandez for five years of service at Monday afternoon’s meeting. Hernandez was hired on Aug. 15, 2011.
• A review of the monthly financial statements indicated in the eighth month, just under 60 percent of the budget has been used. It is anticipated that nearly $22,000 may be put into the capital improvement fund.
• Consultants from CKLS will be attending the Association of Rural and Small Libraries in Fargo, N.D., Oct. 27-29.
• 12,559 people came to the library in August.
• Friends of the Library approved a donation to the children’s department for participation in Zoo Boo at the end of October at the Great Bend Brit Spaugh Zoo.
• Trustees and Friends are encouraged to attend a lecture at the Salina Public Library in October that will highlight the need to promote libraries as part of the education infrastructure of a community. More details will be provided closer to the event.
The next monthly meeting of the Great Bend Public Library Board of Directors will be at 4:30 p.m. on Monday, Oct. 10 at the Library Director’s Office.