Recommendations by Theme

A. Advocacy/Marketing:  These action items speak to a need to better communicate to all constituencies the importance and vitality of libraries. They include recommendations which require vigorous and continuous advocacy for library initiatives.

All Libraries:

1. Improve the marketing of library services to all clientele and communities by rebranding libraries while addressing the erroneous perceptions about the need for libraries in a digital world.

2. Develop better tools for advocacy, and identify library champions at all levels of governance: university and school boards, town and city management, State Education Department, Board of Regents, New York State Legislature and Executive branch.

5. Develop economic justifications for the investments that governments, communities, individuals and philanthropic organizations are asked to make in libraries, and enhance the role of libraries as economic drivers for their communities.

State Library/SED/Board of Regents:

41. Reaffirm the importance of libraries in the lives of all New Yorkers.

52. Direct the State Library to develop appropriate training, including in the areas of advocacy and development, to be required for all boards and advisory councils to improve governance of libraries and library systems.

54. Recognize the Board of Regents’ responsibility for its role as statewide library advocate, and avoid viewing library services only through the prism of P-12 education. Libraries and library systems of all types are essential to raise the knowledge, skill, and opportunity of all the people in New York.

B. Access:  E-Access\Digitization:  These recommendations embrace the future and include initiatives and projects which make more information resources more widely available to everyone in the state and provide a framework for converting legacy resources into easily used and widely accessible resources.

 All Libraries:

3. Collaborate to integrate services and collections of all types of libraries while developing a transparent and seamless world of library services that are ubiquitous and instantaneous, yet personalized and flexible, serving all ages and needs.

7. Function at the front lines of e-resources (including e-books) purchasing, licensing, digital rights management, digital curation, resource-sharing, and preservation; and advocate for the delivery of open content as embodied in initiatives such as the Digital Public Library of America or the Berlin Declaration on Open Access to Knowledge in the Sciences and Humanities.

School Libraries

12. Create incentives to encourage school districts to actively expand and promote access to the school library collection of online resources, e-books, and Web 2.0 tools, available 24/7, to create learning and enrichment opportunities that reach beyond the school day and encourage year-round learning.

13. Create incentives to encourage school districts to adopt flexible scheduling to support full academic day access to school librarians, school library resources and information and digital literacy instruction.

Academic and Research Libraries:

15. The development of a statewide/national digital library of shared use, freely accessible digitized books and research materials through the Hathi Trust and similar organizations.

16. Active participation by New York’s libraries in the Digital Public Library of America and the Internet Archive’s Open Library initiative, in order that New York’s freely available but disparate content can be accessed by all our residents.

17. The acceleration of digitization of special collections and their integration into curricula; and making those materials freely available for research.

18. The publication of academic research generated by faculty that would be universally available at no cost to the user.

19. Leadership in the preservation of digital resources and advocacy for open access and reduced copyright restrictions in the support of digital preservation.

Public Libraries:

24. All public libraries to proactively create and collect local content and serve as a catalyst for civic engagement to promote civil discourse and confront society’s most difficult problems.

26. Support state and national digital literacy learning initiatives providing this 21st century skill to people of all walks of life, not just those enrolled in schools and colleges.

28. The provision of full access to library services by people with disabilities, including accessible buildings, homebound services, and assistive technology.

29. Investment in public library facilities in order to be able to respond to the changing needs of communities — rewiring of older buildings, creation of larger meeting spaces and small meeting rooms, flexible storage solutions so that libraries can adjust as print to e-format ratios change and energy efficiency improvements to keep operating costs down.

Special Libraries:

30. Making special library collections available to other libraries and the public.

31. Collaboration with other libraries in the development of statewide licensing of electronic data bases and e-resources; participation in a state digital library / digital repository.

32. Innovation in the creation of new services such as the deployment of systems for intelligent processing and correlation of large data sets.

33. The collaborative development of consistent, cost-effective digital preservation strategies.

State Library/SED/Board of Regents:

42. Enable the New York State Library to make its licensed electronic resources available to businesses having fewer than 100 employees.

45. Remove regulatory and legislative restrictions to intersystem and statewide cooperative purchasing negotiations while empowering the State Library to take the lead in negotiating statewide licensing for e-resources.

46. Encourage the New York State Library and the state’s library systems to develop statewide delivery infrastructure and to investigate the need for a statewide union catalog.

Technology and the Information Marketplace:

55. Address copyright, licensing, and digital rights management with one firm voice.

56. Encourage the growth of NOVELny or a similar initiative by adding more e-resources of all kinds for statewide access.

57. Identify the current costs of e-resources from all public funds to best determine economies of shared acquisition and use across all schools, libraries, public universities, and state government agencies.

58. Foster the development of a common statewide e-book platform and address the particularly high costs of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) online electronic resources.

59. Encourage branding of all e-content to demonstrate libraries’ value to remain visible and relevant to end users, wherever they may be.

60. Encourage all libraries and library systems to anticipate and participate in the development of a single, digital library with rich functionality that serves all.

 C. Collaboration:   These recommendations build on the strong precedent within the State Department of Education, University of the State of New York for multi-type and cross-institutional work to expand resources and improve quality and success.

All Libraries:

9. Create collaborative partnerships with all cultural and educational organizations in the state to offer our residents the most comprehensive educational opportunities available anywhere in the world.

School Libraries:

14. Create incentives for school libraries to collaborate with other libraries and communities (such as public libraries, university and community college libraries) to result in full-time, full-year access to information that will further opportunities for all students.

Academic and Research Libraries:

20. The continuation and strengthening of collaborations with other communities in support of life-long learning, information literacy and research.

21. Collaboration among all academic libraries in the development of print repositories designed to reduce redundancies within collections while maintaining high levels of access and stewardship.

Public Libraries:

25. Collaboration with other libraries and community organizations to develop seamless information literacy initiatives, promote cultural understanding and protect local historical and cultural treasures.

Library Systems:

34. Increasing and providing incentives for collaboration among systems and with the New York State Library, as well as with other state agencies.

37. Library systems to explore models of broader and more intensive collaboration with their members through appropriate membership fee structures or charges for special services.

State Library/SED/Board of Regents:

50. Create incentives for collaboration, innovation, and shared services among systems.

D. Structure:  These actions suggest or require structural changes for success. The changes may be regulatory (rules), legislative (laws), or operational.

All Libraries:

4. Seek operational and cost efficiencies in light of technological opportunities, energy efficient facilities, and online service delivery methods.

School Libraries:

11. Expand the existing Commissioner’s Regulations (91.2) to require an elementary school librarian in every school to strengthen instructional leadership in meeting the P-12 Common Core Learning Standards, and enforce library staffing regulations in all public schools.

Public Libraries:

23. The further proliferation of the Regents’ Public Library District Model to enable all public libraries to become fully funded and governed through citizen participation and public vote.

Library Systems:

35. An environment of flexible regional solutions without loss of state funding.

36. Library systems to be at the forefront of training, professional development, technological innovation, outreach, marketing and branding, and other high-value services needed by member libraries.

38. Library systems to consider restructuring their governance and initiating partnerships for greater collaboration at the regional and state level; up to and including consolidation.

39. Library systems – as with all libraries — to anticipate and develop innovative and entrepreneurial services; and to discontinue out-of-date services when they no longer provide benefit to their members or the end-users.

40. Public Library Systems to proactively encourage and assist their member libraries that are eligible to pursue the Regents’ Public Library District model of public governance and support.

State Library/SED/Board of Regents:

43. Mandate public library trustee education similar to that required of School Boards.

48. Require the State Library to continuously review and update outdated standards, guidelines, and regulations. Provide clear and relevant standards, guidelines, and regulations designed to improve library services.

49. Provide legal assistance for public libraries seeking district library status.

53. Ask the Governor and Legislature to fully fund the State Library as a part of the State Education Department and as an essential component of the State’s educational infrastructure.

E. Building the future workforce:  These recommendations touch every aspect of staffing and training, including librarianship.

All Libraries:

6. Recruit technologically savvy staff and train current staff in virtual librarianship while influencing higher education to appropriately educate tomorrow’s service providers.

State Library/SED/Board of Regents:

44. Mandate library staff training; make all Public Librarian Certificates renewable contingent upon ongoing professional development, including 10 hours of annual technology training.

51. Encourage and reward best practices throughout the state.

F. Celebrating User Rights:   These recommendations speak to the fundamental value of first amendment freedoms. They reinforce and support a robust and accessible information/cultural resource delivery system.

All Libraries:

8. Actively address issues concerning the privatization of information and its impact on traditional models of library services, defending residents’ rights to free access, free lending and the inter-sharing of materials among libraries.

State Library/SED/Board of Regents:

47. Promote legislation that protects against filtering and other forms of censorship.

 G. Learning and Literacy:  These recommendations suggest fundamental action that creates citizens able and capable of maximizing the fruits of all the available informational resources.

 School Libraries:

10. Adopt and implement a statewide information fluency curriculum framework, aligned with the New York State P-12 Common Core Learning Standards, which, through certified school librarians and a strong library program, will provide equitable access to information and digital literacy instruction and tools. Such a framework will further the schools’ ultimate goal of preparing students, beginning at the elementary level, with the literacy and digital skills and knowledge needed for career or college.

Academic and Research Libraries:

22. Advancement of the primary role of academic librarians in fostering the integration of information literacy competencies into teaching and learning on their campuses to support student academic achievement and to prepare students for the global information economy that will shape their professional and personal lives.

Public Libraries:

27. The provision of robust early childhood education programs and the provision of homework assistance as a core service; the alignment of outreach services with societal priorities, such as teen services and gang prevention.


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