One of the ways my summer reading program is successful is in the book share program we have with the local school system. Beginning in May my public library starts accepting deliveries of books from the schools. The books come in boxes and I begin sorting the piles into grade level and labeling them. Here’s one from the 6th grade list:
I use orange tape because it has no other significance in my library system.
The second step is cataloging them. I use the record in our system for the books we already own and use a special summer code to designate the book:
I use the school book barcode for ease of running reports in the fall, and type in the grade level for the call number. The books are displayed in a special section with signs and circulation information for patrons.
We setup a special modifier in our circulation system to allow:
- the books to circulate only to our patrons who live in our town
- limit 2 books per card to be checked out at a time
- the circulation period is 14 days with no renewals
In other libraries I’ve worked in, we cannot use a book barcode that differs from our designated number system. In that case I hide the barcodes on the copyright page and use the special color coded tape to cover up the school barcode so it won’t scan. Of course, I worked with the schools to get permission to do this! I tried temporary barcodes once and it was a disaster! We lost books and didn’t know who had them. The children’s books definitely need something permanent:
At the end of the summer I pack up the books and deliver them to the schools. I run a report with outstanding books. If, by October, the books are not returned a list goes to the school and they sort it out.
I also run a circulation report and give the circ numbers to each school so they can add it into their total circulation for the year. (This is a great way for the school book budget to increase.)
This program is a win-win! We both get circulation up and patrons have double the choices of book selection they normally would. It’s hard work on both of our efforts, but it’s well worth it.
How do you collaborate with the schools for success?