Selection Policy

Selection Policy

The mission of the Shorewood Public Library includes serving the community with resources that promote lifelong learning and engagement. Without censorship, the library provides patrons with access to professionally selected physical and digital materials that represent diverse voices and viewpoints. Through these resources, the library supports development of the whole person, at all ages, with materials that entertain, educate and expand the human experience.

In addition to a physical collection of material, the library provides access to digital resources which support the mission and values of the library. Shorewood Public Library subscribes to and makes available digital resources directly and in partnership with the Milwaukee County Federated Library System, Wisconsin Public Library Consortium and the Department of Public Instruction's BadgerLink. Staff at Shorewood Public Library contribute to advocacy, evaluation, maintenance, promotion, instruction, and other efforts related to the use and upkeep of digital library resources.

The library values growth, creativity and open-mindedness. Library patrons make their own choices as to what resources they access at or from the library based on their own interests and concerns. Shorewood Public Library supports the right of each individual to decide what is appropriate for themselves and/or their children, therefore the library makes any and all resources available to all library users regardless of age.

Selection Criteria

Physical materials held by the library are selected and maintained by professional librarians who use experience, judgment, subject-area expertise, data, and reviews. The library purchases items in multiple formats with an emphasis on those that are popular, widely accessible, durable, and which provide appropriate return on investment. Materials in the collection at Shorewood Public Library are continually evaluated for quality, accuracy, currency, and their ability to meet users' needs.

All selection and deselection decisions rest with the library staff, and are made in accordance with this policy.

Shorewood Public Library uses these criteria to select for and maintain the collection:

  • All resources selected by Shorewood Public Library are weighed for complementary value to the existing collection, social significance or timeliness, local interest in or demand for the content, subject or format, authoritativeness, quality/appeal, and availability of the item, or items on the subject, from other libraries in the Milwaukee County Federated Library System.
  • All resources selected by or made accessible through the Shorewood Public Library should be in demand by patrons, in good condition relative to their age and format, and materials that purport to present fact must be accurate and up-to-date.
  • All resources selected by or made accessible through the Shorewood Public Library must provide adequate return on investment as determined by the Library Board and Director, and the library will compare cost-to-use factors to determine such return.

Access to Other Institutions' Materials

Shorewood Public Library cooperates with other institutions in Milwaukee County, and more widely, to supplement access to various resources for library patrons. Shorewood Public Library does not make any decision about what other institutions select and own, and abides by system policies which govern the use of materials owned by other institutions. 

As part of these cooperative agreements, Shorewood Public Library lends circulating physical materials to all Milwaukee County Federated Library System libraries, and to many other institutions via limited lending agreements for inter-library loan set by Milwaukee Public Library’s inter-library services office.

Requests for Reconsideration

Shorewood Public Library values intellectual freedom and adheres to the Library Bill of Rights established by the American Library Association which states that, “Materials should not be excluded because of the origin, background, or views of those contributing to their creation,” and that, “Materials should not be proscribed or removed because of partisan or doctrinal disapproval.” Further, Shorewood Public Library’s organizational values uphold that the library provides patrons with materials without censorship.

Patrons of Shorewood Public Library may ask the library to reconsider inclusion of an item in the physical collection. Requests must be made in writing following the established Material Reconsideration Procedure (see below). Requests will be reviewed by the selecting librarian and Library Director to determine whether the item in question will be removed from the collection. The requestor may appeal the decision of the library staff by taking the written request in person to a regularly-scheduled meeting of the Library Board of Trustees.

Approved by the Library Board on November 14, 2018

Selection Policy

To ask the library to reconsider inclusion of an item in the collection, please read the Material Reconsideration Procedure and complete the attached form:

Material Reconsideration Procedure and Form