Policies pertaining to children

Information for Parents and Guardians Regarding After School Use of the Scarborough Public Library

The Scarborough Public Library welcomes students after school who are attending one of our many youth programs, looking for a quiet place to do homework, or using library services.

We offer the following reminders and suggestions and encourage you to share this information with your child.

  • The Library is a public facility and should not be used as an alternative to afterschool care.
  • Children under the age of 10 cannot be in the Library without the supervision of an adult.
  • Library staff do not monitor the comings and goings of students in and out of the building. We require that students keep personal belongings with them at all times.
  • If a student is exhibiting inappropriate behavior, he/she will be asked to leave the Library and its grounds.
  • The Library is not responsibile for monitoring what a student acessess on his/her computer or mobile device.
  • We close at 5:00 pm on Mondays and Fridays. Students must be picked up prior to that time as they cannot remain in the building and there is no protected area outside to wait on cold, snowy, or rainy days.

The Library is committed to working closely with school administrators and other community partners to create a safe, nurturing environment for students. We thank you for your help and cooperation in making this possible.

If you have any questions or comments, please contact Louise Capizzo, Youth Services Manager, at 396-6278 or lcapizzo [at] scarboroughlibrary.org or Nancy Crowell, Library Director, at 396-6266 or ncrowell [at] scarboroughlibrary.org

Policy of Service To Children

Every child should have available a free public library which provides materials, resources, and reader guidance to meet informational, educational, and recreational needs.

The Scarborough Public Library is committed to library service which will:

  • promote the lifelong enjoyment of reading and literature;
  • develop capable and critical users of information and technology;
  • contribute to the continuing intellectual and creative development of the community's children; and, thereby, establish the Library as a vital community resource.

The Library will allocate sufficient funding to provide for:

  • qualified professional staff with direct responsibility for the planning,
  • management, and evaluation of services to children;
  • children's services staff possessing a broad knowledge of children's literature and information resources; a knowledge of children's physical and intellectual growth; and a genuine caring and respect for children;
  • diverse collections in various formats and interest levels that capture the interest and imagination of children; meet high standards of quality and attractiveness; and reflect the changing interests of young people, parents, adults who work with children, and society in general.
  • programs which promote library use and excite children about literature,
  • information, and technology;
  • cooperative efforts with schools and other community organizations serving children, particularly to identify underserved children and to develop appropriate services for them;

The Scarborough Public Library values a free and inquiring society, and affirms its support of the Library Bill of Rights, Free Access to Libraries for Minors, the Freedom to Read, and the Maine Revised Statutes Chapter 4-A :Library Records. The Library acknowledges and supports the rights of parents to guide their own child's viewing and reading. Parents or legal guardians are encouraged to help their children make selections of those materials which reflect  family values and beliefs.

passed 1/16/97

Policy on Unattended Children

The Scarborough Public Library has as one of its goals to operate as a facility to assist children enjoy their visits to the library and to develop, through their visits, a love of books, reading and libraries.

However, children left unattended in the library are not safe. The staff cannot know if children are leaving the building or the grounds with parents or strangers. Unattended children often become anxious which may lead to behavior problems. The following policy has been adopted to clarify for parents, children, and the staff, the concern of the library for the well being of its patrons:

  1. Scarborough Public Library welcomes children to use the library services and encourages parents to enjoy the library with their child(ren).
  2. Children and young people are welcome at the library for any period during which they engage in appropriate activities which include: doing homework, reading, browsing for books or other library materials, researching, writing, thinking.
  3. The responsibility for the safety and behavior of children visiting the library rests with the parent / guardian or assigned chaperone, not with library personnel.
  4. Children under the age of ten may not be left in the library unattended nor may they be left at the library or on its grounds at closing time.
  5. Children under the age of ten are expected to be in the immediate presence of and under the control of the parent / guardian / chaperone who is responsible for supervising the safety and behavior of their child(ren) while in the library or on library grounds.
  6. Library staff has been charged by the Board of Trustees with the responsibility to enforce this policy. Use of the library may be denied for due cause.

Amended 2/20/98