Library medial resources are integral to and supportive of the total educational program in
the Muscogee County School District. The selection of these resources is an educational
function designed to implement the curriculum and to further the intellectual, social and
cultural development of the students in an information rich environment. Therefore, a
flexibly scheduled, cooperatively planned, unified media program is implemented in each school,
is staffed by a certified media specialist whose role is based upon role definitions found in
Roles in Media Program Development: School and Community, and is fully integrated into
the educational program. This integration strengthens the teaching/learning process so
that students can develop the vital skills necessary to locate, analyze, evaluate, interpret,
and communicate information and ideas.
The Muscogee County School District encourages extensive use of media resources in
classrooms in all subject areas. These various media resources should be selected to meet
existing program objectives and specific subject area needs to accommodate the multiple
intelligences and learning styles of students.
The goals of an individual school library media center are the same as those of the school
whose curriculum it supports and enriches.
Specific objectives of the library media centers are: to provide print and nonprint
instructional resources which are basic to the instructional program; to provide an up-to-date,
print and electronic, general reference collection; to provide a selected collection of books
and periodicals for general reading, not specific to any one curricular field, which will
create a desire to continue reading with discrimination; to maintain a basic collection of
professional resources to assist instructors in their teaching.
The library media centers also are dedicated to providing materials to attract students to
reading as a source of pleasure and recreation in addition to materials relating to subject
II. Identification and Definitions of Types of Media
All instructional materials, whatever their physical makeup, fall within the scope of this
selection policy. It is the function of the school library media center to provide
materials which undergird the school curriculum as it is no longer realistic to think of
teaching and learning materials only in terms of the printed word. All materials selected
for school media centers, in whatever format, should meet high standards of excellence.
Essential to providing a variety of nonprint media to meet instructional needs is the
availability of cassette players, videocassette recorders, televisions, various projectors,
computer hardware, and other equipment necessary for media utilization. These should be
available in sufficient number to meet user demand.
Instructional materials refer to all materials in a school which are intended to be used by
students and teachers to enrich the teaching/learning process.
A. Textbooks those materials that serve as the basis of the
instructional program and are purchased by the school in sufficient number to supply the needs
of a major portion of an instructional group.
B. Consumable Materials those materials which are consumed in one use
and provide appropriate support to the instruction of individuals or groups. Consumable
instructional materials do not include basic supplies.
C. Library Media Resources all other materials in the school are
library media resources regardless of format. No more than five copies of one title will
count toward SACS requirements for accreditation.
III. Media Committees District and School
It shall be the direct responsibility of the media committees on the district and individual
school levels, operating under the School Board, to oversee and carry out the goals, policies
and procedures stated herein. Additionally, the media committee shall make
recommendations for program priorities and the expansion and deletion of services in keeping
with these priorities. Membership of these committees shall be composed of at least one
representative each of administrative, instructional and medial personnel; student, community,
and parent groups.
IV. Policy Development, Review, and Legal Adherence
The committee for the development of this policy shall be composed of the system level media
committee. This policy shall be reviewed annually and revised as necessary, and shall
adhere to GBOE rules and state and federal laws.
V. Legal Responsibility and Its Delegation
The ultimate legal responsibility for all materials selection and implementation in schools
within the Muscogee County School District rests with the Board of Education. The Board
exercises this responsibility by establishing policies and delegating authority for them to be
The responsibility for final materials selection shall be delegated to professionally
trained personnel who know the requisites of a well-balanced collection, the courses of study,
the methods of teaching, and the individual differences, abilities and needs of the students in
the schools for which the materials are provided. Such selection will be in accordance
with the specific criteria given in the selection policy.
The implementation of instructional media is the cooperative responsibility of
administrators, faculty and media personnel. Determination of its immediate purposes and
selection should be in keeping with the objectives herein stated. The professional staff
of the individual school with the media specialist, principal and media committee will assume
VI. Selection of School Library Media Center Materials
The following policies apply to the selection of materials:
The professional library media specialist with specialized training must utilize the
selectivity process. This process, of necessity, is judgmental within the bounds of
broadly established criteria. The purpose of this process is to select the best and most
significant examples on a subject from the wealth of materials available.
A book or other media that contributes to the positive growth of a person by broadening
horizons, stimulating imagination or reflection or by enlarging experience has educational
Each media center should contain ample materials presenting the democratic principles upon
which the United States is founded.
Intelligent selection requires: (a) both professional competence and the ability to profit
by the professional competence of others; (b) depth of knowledge of the curriculum; (c)
knowledge of the needs, interests and abilities of the users; (d) the amount of appropriation
for the individual media center and (e) knowledge of materials available to users from other
A. Evaluative Criteria
The following will be considered acceptable sources when ordering:
Direct personal evaluation.
Requests from other professional personnel.
Replacement copies for lost or damaged books previously contained in the collection.
Materials recommended for supplementary use by District approved courses of study and
Regional materials, particularly those on Georgia.
Materials other than the above should receive favorable reviews in critical review journals
(i.e., Library Journal, School Library Journal, Booklist) and materials appearing in
standard medial selection tools such as Childrens Catalog, Middle and Junior High School
Library Catalog and the Senior High School Library Catalog.
A critical review may be defined as an objective review appearing in a standard media review
magazine or digest which presents both the favorable and unfavorable aspects of the material
under consideration. Blurbs in publishers catalogs do not constitute critical
The following criteria taken from The School Library Media Center (Prostano,
1990) are particularly appropriate to the selection and utilization of nonprint media.
Authenticity: Is the medium accurate and up-to-date? What are the qualifications of
the author or producer?
Appropriateness: Is the medium appropriate to the subject matter? Are the vocabulary,
content, concepts, and theme, suited for the intended audience?
Content: Does it have an organized, well-balanced presentation? Does it relate
to the needs of the students? Does it provide outlines, teachers guides, charts, graph,
etc., which would be helpful to the user?
Interest: Will the message contained in this medium hold the attention of the
user? Is it stimulating? Imaginative?
Technical Quality: Is the quality of production adequate- format, audio and visual
qualities, ease of handling, and use of color?
B. Specific Procedures
Direct personal evaluation of all media before purchase is the most intelligent means of
selection and is preferred whenever possible (book exhibits, displays, previews, etc.).
Know the selection tools that give fair, objective evaluations since personal review is not
Selection of materials will be greatly assisted by the reading examination and checking of
standard evaluation tools i.e., standard catalogs and book review digests (not publishers
catalogs), but these should not be considered the final authority. Lists are only as
reliable as the person or organization who prepared them. Use the most current
It is the responsibility of the media center staff to consult teachers, as the subject area
specialists in education, about the selection of materials, and to secure their assistance in
the evaluation of materials. Each school must have a media committee to assist in this
Students are encouraged to make recommendations of materials in which they are interested or
which they need.
A file should be kept recording the basis for decisions for titles likely to be questioned
or inclined to be considered controversial.
Titles selected from a series should be requested as individual titles and not as the entire
set. Each title in a series should be evaluated carefully and only those titles which
will make a contribution to the school program should be purchased.
Magazines and other periodicals used in school library media centers will be selected from
the latest edition of Magazines for Libraries and/or from other reputable resources.
Representatives must have permission from the Superintendents office before going into any
of the schools.
The aim of materials selection is to temper freedom with responsibility and
Selection is a cooperative process which should involve faculty and students, although the
final selection and purchase responsibility may rest with the library media specialist and the
Since there is within a school heterogeneity of ability and interest, the collection must
contain both easy and difficult materials on specific subjects.
Materials should be selected for specific purposes such as to stimulate discussion, assist
in making judgments, present purely factual information, encourage creativity, show humor,
honesty, love, hate or an awareness of social problems. Media should be evaluated in
terms of the purposes they are to serve.
The Muscogee County School District is more concerned with HOW a material is to be used and
WHAT the anticipated result of its use will be than with the source from which it was
selected. Nevertheless, selection criteria should be both practical and desirable.
VII. Supplementary Materials Selection and Usage
A. Consumable Materials
These materials will be chosen on the basis of the purposes for their use and evaluated as
to whether or not they achieve that purpose. Consumable materials are teaching materials
which are designed to be used by students only once, and are, for example, workbooks in the
different subject areas.
B. Non-School Owned Supplementary Resources
Privately owned or unauthorized media, whatever the source, used in a classroom situation
must meet the same guidelines for excellence and appropriateness set forth in this policy as
school purchased materials. Before use in a classroom, these media must be approved by
the principal or designee, such as the media specialist or individual school media
committee. Examples of these types of instructional resources are videotapes, electronic
media, periodicals, books, pamphlets, or other print or nonprint materials.
VIII. Access to Resources and Services in the School Library Media Program
As affirmed and adopted July, 1986 and amended January, 1990, by the American Library
Association Council, the position statement of the American Association of School Librarians in
its interpretation of the Library Bill of Rights states that the school library media program
plays a unique role in promoting intellectual freedom. It serves, as a point of voluntary
access to information and ideas and as a learning laboratory for students as they acquire
critical thinking and problem solving skills needed in a pluralistic society.
The following principles of the LIBRARY BILL OF RIGHTS apply to the school library media
programs of the Muscogee County School District:
School library media professionals assume a leadership role in promoting the principles of
intellectual freedom within the school by providing resources and services that create and
sustain an atmosphere of free inquiry. Through resources, programming, and educational
processes, students and teachers experience the free and robust debate characteristic of a
School library media professionals cooperate with other individuals in building collections
of resources appropriate to the development and maturity levels of students. Resources in
school library media collections represent diverse points of view and current as well as
Members of the school community involved in the collection development process employ
educational criteria to select resources unfettered by their personal, political, social, or
Students and educators served by the school library media program have access to resources
and services free of constraints resulting from personal, partisan, or doctrinal
Policies, procedures, and rules related to the use of resources and services support free
and open access to information.
The School Board adopts policies that guarantee access to a broad range of ideas.
These include policies on collection development and procedures for the review of resources
about which concerns have been raised. Such policies, developed by the persons in the
school community, provide for a timely and fair hearing and assure that procedures are applied
equitably to all expressions of concern. School library media professionals implement
district policies and procedures in the school.
The following statement adopted by the Childrens and Young Peoples Section of the Georgia
Association of Education also applies:
Books relating to controversial issues should be carefully selected. We are living in
a time of conflicting beliefs, diverse ideas and changing attitudes. The purpose of the
school library media center is to provide background information which will enable pupils to
make intelligent judgments in their daily lives. The media center shall provide materials
on opposing sides of controversial issues so that young citizens may develop under guidance,
the practice of critical reading and thinking.
IX. Reconsideration for Challenged Materials
Despite both the care taken to select valuable materials for student use and the
qualifications of persons who evaluate and recommend books, occasional objections as to the
appropriateness of a selection will perhaps be made.
Continuous evaluation of the media center collection by both teaching and media faculties is
strongly recommended. Any materials not meeting the criteria set forth in this selection
policy and added through errors in judgment in the process of selection should be removed from
The review of challenged materials should be treated objectively, unemotionally, as an
important but routine action. Since differences of opinion may be expected, the
following procedures shall be observed to recognize those differences in an impartial and
Challenged material will not be removed automatically from a collection, but will be
reviewed in the light of the objections raised.
Criticisms must be submitted in writing on the form provided and include specific
information as to author, title, publisher and specific objections. The statement must be
signed and identification given which will allow a proper reply. The complainant should
state what action he/she wants taken.
It is the delegated responsibility of the library media specialists and principal from the
school involved to participate on the reviewing committee with other members including the
school media committee, which should be composed of faculty with parent representation.
The materials shall be reviewed according to the established selection criteria stated
Although the Board of Education recognizes and supports the parents right to guide his/her
childs reading, the best interests of all the students, the curriculum, the school and the
community shall be the final consideration.
The committee will read and examine the materials referred to it and general acceptance of
the materials will be checked by reading evaluative reviews. Values and perceived faults
will be weighed against each other and opinions formed based on the materials as a whole and
not on passages pulled out of context.
The committee will be free to call upon representatives from administration and supervisory
personnel. An opportunity for the complainant to express his/her opinions before this
committee should be provided if he/she so desires.
A letter summarizing the committees recommendation (i.e., removal from the media center,
restricted use or retention on the open shelves) shall be sent to the complainant, the
Assistant Superintendent for Instruction and other parties concerned.
This decision may be appealed in writing to the District Board of Education through the
Superintendent. The State Board of Education will rule on challenged materials (only)
after the appeal has gone through normal appeal procedures.
All materials offered as gifts are accepted with the understanding that they will be
evaluated on the basis of the criteria set forth for selection and only those meeting these
standards are added to the individual school media center collections.
XI. Weeding and Reassignment of Instructional Materials
In order to keep the media center collections organized and updated, materials that are
out-of-date, severely worn or damaged or no longer useful in the school curriculum program
should be continuously and responsibly pulled from the shelves and consequently withdrawn from
the resource collection. In the event specific kinds of materials are no longer needed as
support for an individual school curriculum or there is a surplus of certain materials in a
school library media center due to decreased enrollment, or if a school is closed, the
instructional materials made available for whatever reason and from whatever source will be
reassigned to schools where they can be used by the same selection process used for new
XII. Reimbursing for Lost and Damaged Instructional Resources
The Muscogee County School District Board of Education retains the right to charge students
a reasonable fee for restitution of lost, damaged, or abused school system property, including
textbooks, library books or media materials.
XIII. Reproduction and Utilization of Copyrighted and Licensed Materials
Employees of the Muscogee County School District may reproduce copyrighted materials under
the provision of the copyright laws currently in force under Title 17 of the United States
Any reproduction of copyrighted materials will be done either with the written permission of
the copyright holder or within the bounds of Fair Use guidelines provided in the Copyright
Act; otherwise, the individual responsible for reproduction may be liable for infringing the
copyright under existing laws.
The copyright law does not attempt to address each form of hardware/software with specific
guidelines for appropriate use. However, using parallel or analogical reasoning, drawing
concepts and principles from decisions that have been rendered in related areas or domain
(McKenzie, 1997), schools can draw guidelines for new information technologies such as cable
and satellite-delivered television programming, computer/CD-ROM software, laserdiscs, Internet
and other online materials. With the lack of specific guidelines, schools must refer to
the rights of the author combined with the Fair Use guidelines.
The Board of Education of the Muscogee County School District in recognizing the importance
of the Copyright Law of the United States (Title 17, United States Code) hereby notifies all
employees that a willful infringement of the law may result in disciplinary action. In
the case of a court action for damages, a finding of willful infringement would preclude the
School Boards paying any judgment rendered against the employee and paying any attorneys fees
or costs which the employee would incur in conjunction with a lawsuit and render the employee
liable to the School Board for any damages which the School Board is liable to pay.
Questions on copyright either for clarification or additional information should be directed
to the person designated on an annual basis by the Superintendent.
XIV. Purchasing Procedures
The established purchasing policies and procedures of the Muscogee County School District
will be followed in securing instructional media and equipment.
XV. Identification of Education Specifications for Constructing and Renovating
The School Board sets as minimum for new construction and renovation the requirements for
functional areas, square footage, electronic distribution system as specified in A Guide for
Planning and Construction of Public School Facilities in Georgia: Media Center
Facilities. Having a media specialist involved in the planning stages of the
construction and/or renovation of media centers in the school district is both practical and
XVI. Procedures for Implementation of Policy
The school principal, in collaboration with the school media committee, will develop
procedures to be included in a handbook or other document relative to the media policy