Atchison Public Library

Library Resources Selection Policy

The Atchison Public Library is organized under the laws of Kansas and is authorized under K.S.A. 12-1225 “…to acquire by purchase, gift or exchange, books, magazines, papers, printed materials, slides, pictures, films, projection equipment, phonographic records and other material and equipment deemed necessary by the board for the maintenance and extension of modern library services.”

Responsibility for Selection
The Board of Directors delegates the responsibility for the selection of library materials to staff selected by the director whose education and experience prepare them for this important function.

The appointed library staff are to select materials reflecting the needs and interests of citizens of the library district and others granted privileges by the Board of Directors, rather than the tastes, views, and interests of the selector. Satisfying the needs and interests of the community of users served is the goal of this selection policy.

General Selection Criteria
This Materials Selection Policy serves as the foundation for the creation and maintenance of all of the various collections of materials provided by the Library. Selection of all materials, whether through purchase or otherwise, is to be based on the principles described in this Policy.
Selection of any item does not constitute endorsement of the creator’s viewpoint, nor does the Library endorse particular beliefs or views.
The Library does not act “in loco parentis.” Parents or guardians are responsible to guide the selection of materials by their children.
While a single standard cannot be applied to each work, the following general criteria are to be used in selecting all Library materials:

  • Importance and value to the library collection
  • Reputation, credibility, and/or authoritativeness of the author, artist, publisher, or producer
  • Current appeal, popular demand, and timeliness
  • Significance of the subject matter
  • Local interest
  • Availability or scarcity of materials on the subject
  • Cost
  • Level of difficulty and specialization
  • Reviews, summaries, and descriptions of materials from professional resources
  • Format suitability for public library collections
  • Accessibility to materials elsewhere in area libraries
  • Physical quality and level of durability
  • Inclusion in indexes, bibliographies, and standard lists

Selection Criteria for Non-print Materials
The selection standards above for print materials apply equally to non-print materials. However, an item need not meet all of the selection criteria for non-print materials, some materials must be judged primarily on the following:

  • Artistic merit
  • Scholarship
  • As a valuable record
  • As critical to the information needs of the community of users
  • Substantial demand from the community of users

Removal from Collection
The Board of Directors delegates the responsibility to remove library materials from the collection to the director and library staff whose education and experience prepare them for this important function.

Criteria for Removal
Any library material which no longer satisfies the applicable selection criteria as described in this policy may be removed in accordance with applicable statutes and other pertinent library policies and procedures.

Labels may be used to assist users in locating materials, but not to warn, discourage, or restrict access based on content, language, or theme.
Library Patron Suggestions about the Collections
The Board of Directors recognizes the importance of providing methods whereby opinions from the public regarding material selection can be voiced. Patron suggestions for additions to the collection can be submitted through the online catalog or communicated directly to library staff. Suggestions are relayed to the appropriate staff and will be considered for selection based on the Library Resources Selection Policy.

Library Patron Opinions of the Collections
The Board of Directors recognize the importance of providing methods so that opinions from users regarding material selection can be voiced and dealt with promptly and courteously as outlined in the Expressions of Concern process.

Expressions of Concern
The Atchison Public Library recognizes that some materials or content may be found controversial or offensive. The library’s role is to provide materials which will allow individuals to freely examine subjects and make their own decisions. While patrons are free to reject for themselves materials they do not approve of, they may not restrict the freedom of access to others.
If a patron is concerned about the inclusion of an item in the collection or other library resources, they are encouraged to follow the “Expression of Concern Process”.

Expressions of Concern Process

    1. Atchison Public Library staff will listen to the patron’s concerns. Library staff will give the patron a copy of the Library Resources Selection Policy and explain the library’s selection process. If the patron wishes, they may also discuss concerns with the library director.
    2. After discussion with library staff, an individual or group still concerned about library material may submit an official statement using the “Statement of Concern about Library Resources” form.
    3. The concern on the “Statement of Concern about Library Resources” form will be considered by a committee of three library employees designated by the library director. The library director may be a member of the committee. This committee will meet and the director or designated staff will prepare a written report of the committee’s determination for both the Library Board of Directors and for the individual or group who submitted the concern.
    4. An individual or group may submit a written request for reconsideration to the Atchison Library Board of Directors if not satisfied with the decision of the committee.

The Statement of Concern Form may be picked up at the library or downloaded from the link below.

Statement of Concern about Library Resources
This form may be used to express concern regarding the library collection, programs, displays/exhibits, or meeting rooms. Concerns will be dealt with promptly and courteously.

Statement of Concern about Library Resources
Please complete this form and return it to:
Atchison Public Library
401 Kansas Ave.
Atchison, KS 66002
Or email director:

Today’s Date _______________________
Name of Individual or Group ____________________________________________________
Contact Person ______________________________________________________________
Phone _________________________ Email _______________________________________
Address ____________________________________________________________________
City___________________ State __________________ Zip Code_____________

Resource of concern:
[ ] Book or Magazine
[ ] Video/DVD
[ ] Audio recording/CD
[ ] Electronic information
[ ] Library program
[ ] Display/exhibit
[ ] Meeting room
[ ] Other (please explain)________________________

Resource description: (title, author, artist, program name, etc)

Have you (please select all that apply):
[ ] Read the Book or Magazine
[ ] Viewed the Video/DVD
[ ] Listened to the Audio recording/CD
[ ] Viewed the Electronic information
[ ] Attended the Library program
[ ] Viewed the Display/exhibit
[ ] Attended the Meeting
[ ] Other

How did you find out about the resource(s)?


What are you concerns about the resources(s)?


5. What action do you seek as a result of your concern?


Approved by the Atchison Library Board of Trustees on February 25, 2002; Revised November 22, 2010, Revised September 26,2022

Reviewed and approved by the Board of Directors on February 26, 2024