Collection Development Policy

Bethany Library Association:
Clark Memorial Library
Collection Development Policy

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Clark Memorial Library provides a collection of print, audiovisual and digital materials. These materials offer education, entertainment, and enrichment.

The Library creates its collection in partnership with the Bethany Community, welcoming input and recommendations on the content we should acquire. We closely watch how our collections are used, and regularly adjust our spending to best meet the needs of Clark Memorial Library cardholders.

The Library Board entrusts the Library Director with collection development. Although the staff participates in the selection process, the Library Director is ultimately responsible for the selection of materials. The selection criteria are as follows:

  • Community need
  • Reviews in professional journals
  • Evident popularity
  • Demonstrated need in subject areas
  • Professional judgment as to subject, quantity and physical format
  • Topical interest

The Library is a forum for all points of view and adheres to the principles of intellectual freedom. In creating its collection, the Library is guided by three documents adopted by the American Library Association:

The Library will make available, insofar as is possible, materials that present various points of view concerning problems and issues of our times, consistent with the principles referenced above.

The Library participates in the LION Consortium, which expands access to the collections of 28 other libraries in Connecticut. The Library will obtain materials it does not own or are not available in the Consortium libraries either through inter-library loan or purchase, subject to budget restraints and subject to the selection criteria listed above.


Reconsideration Form

Individuals may take issue with Library materials that do not support their tastes and views. Staff is available to discuss concerns and identify alternate materials that may be available. If a patron’s concern is not satisfied through discussion with staff, a formal, written request for reconsideration of materials may be submitted to the Library Director. Copies of this form are available online or at the circulation desk.

For a request for reconsideration to be considered, the form must be completed in full. The patron submitting the request must be a resident of Bethany and hold a valid borrower’s card. The Library Director will respond in writing, within thirty days of receipt, to the patron’s request for reconsideration. The response will indicate the action to be taken and reasons for or against the request. An item will only be evaluated for reconsideration once in a twelve-month period.


If, at the discretion of the Library Director, Library materials become dated, obsolete, or unused, these materials will be withdrawn from the collection. Criteria include:

  • Condition—damaged or missing parts
  • Dated content, no longer accurate or reliable
  • Lack of use
  • No longer relevant to the community
  • Availability of content via other sources
  • Space limitations as new items are acquired
  • Multiple copies of a title

Efforts will be made to dispose of withdrawn materials as follows, as storage space and staff time permit:

  • Free giveaways to library patrons
  • Sale by the Friends of the Library
  • Donation to nonprofit organizations that are willing to pick up all materials
  • Disposal of materials in appropriate waste/recycling receptacles

Approved by Bethany Library Association 4/26/2021.