January 2011, Volume 3, Issue 1
Check Your Calendars!!
ALA Midwinter Meeting
Public Library Survey
February 1-March 31
2011 National African American Read-in
Read Across America Day
Teen Tech Week
School Library Month
School Library Survey
April 1-May 18
National Library Week
South Dakota Library Week
National D.E.A.R. Day
National Preservation Week
Featured e-Resources of the Month
Plunge into ProQuest's New Platform
State agencies and public libraries partner for job seekers
The State Library recently completed a four-hour workshop at nine sites across the state, training librarians and community agencies on working together to help job seekers. The workshop “Project Compass, SD—Libraries Helping Job Seekers” was based on a Project Compass course taken by SDSL staff offered free by the Institute of Museum & Library Services, in conjunction with WebJunction, a library learning community, and the North Carolina State Library. Project Compass also held regional meetings, and SDSL sent a public library staff person as its representative. Project Compass later offered two more free courses, which SDSL gave to two public library staff, who then paired with SDSL staff to co-present our South Dakota workshops.
Community agency representatives attending the workshops with public librarians included DOL staff and representatives from Experience Works, Human Services, mental and physical health agencies, and non-profit training and aid organizations.
The training provided attendees the opportunity for focused discussion about resources relevant to their area. The training covered types of job seekers and their needs, library/agency resources and obstacles, library/agency services, library/agency partnerships and promoting job seeking efforts.
Trainers observed libraries and agencies solidifying relationships previously made, considering how to work together more closely, and learning more about each other’s services. In some cases, agencies even learned more about their own services. Examples include libraries eager to stock DOL brochures, everyone learning about new websites and databases, and agencies developing programming partnerships, in which libraries provide space and publicity and agencies provide the program.
At the training at Oglala Lakota College, Pine Ridge Reservation, the community agency learned that the library had computers and programming space that she and her clients could use. The library learned about the community partner’s job resources and training and offered to promote them.
Evaluations indicated that participants left with plans to help patrons use the best tools for finding a job, refer job seekers to resources they may not know, update the list of services they provide, continue to promote the library as a source of job information and a place where they can receive training for job skills, create a binder of information about services in the local community and on the Internet, develop a brochure of local services, add or enhance job seeking information on their Web site, and have a booth at a community job fair or event.
SDSL is pleased with this program’s success and plans to offer more workshops in different sites this spring. More Project Compass resources are available at WebJunction.
Board Talk: Public Library Survey — It’s all local… really… and it all starts with you!
By Daria Bossman, Asst. State Librarian for Development Services
It’s that time of year again. It’s time to start thinking about the Public Library Survey. Some of you may not realize that the federal and state collection of data is a year round process. You may not realize that those statistics about your local public libraries’ activities shared once a year at a regular meeting, are really the result of hundreds of people working full time year round to bring the best and most accurate statistics to you. And even with all this activity and the US Census folks involved as well, most national data is still reported out a good 18 months after the close of any given calendar year. That means that statistics that are reported in February and March of 2011 for the previous year (calendar year 2010) are not published nationally until the summer of 2012. And yet they say that the reporting out has never been faster. It just takes that long to collect it, submit it, verify the data, impute missing data, collate and analyze it and get something published in layman’s terms which are meaningful and useful to local leaders like you. And I trust you are not just satisfied with a report of your own public library’s activities. I hope you are asking your librarian what neighboring communities are doing, how your library compares to other South Dakota libraries as well as the national trends. See IMLS: Public Library Statistics
There has never been a better time for communities, most especially small ones, to invest in public libraries. In these tough economic times, it is one of the most effective and efficient uses of our collective tax dollars. One trend is the morphing of the local public library into a community center — one where community folks gather and share, attend programming which is much more than a traditional book talk these days, access thousands of articles and information through the Internet or electronic databases, and continue traditional uses of a library like checking out a great fiction read.
I’d like to encourage you to take an interest in knowing the facts not only about your public library, but about South Dakota’s libraries. One easy way to do that is to print off our Public Library Data Digest. You can locate a copy from library.sd.gov
Here we have taken statistics our librarians have painstakingly collected and submitted and collated these facts into some more meaningful graphs and interesting text. That combined with colorful photos of our public libraries makes for a very interesting read. Let me know what you think. Is it helpful? Did you find it informative?
And when you get a chance, say “thank you” to your librarian for all the hours she/he spends collecting and inputting data into our survey. They read instructions, deal with temperamental computers, dig up statistics, contact your city’s finance folks, call us, and take online webinar trainings… all to be more effective and accurate in the submission of this important data. And less someone ask, “Why bother?” may I remind you our state legislators were wise enough years ago to mandate this annual data collection. It is just plain “the law,” and our SD code specifies that the local public library board is the one body ultimately responsible for its accurate and timely submission.
So, for all of you who take the time to work on the Public Library Survey, or to read, listen and study all these facts and statistics, we here at the State Library say “thank you.” You make our jobs easier and we appreciate all you do. It’s all local… really… and it all starts with you!
Happy New Year from the Research Services Department
The State Library Research Department consists of reference services and state and federal documents services. SDSL is the state publications distribution center and depository library, providing access to numerous publications to all state government agencies and SD citizens, and distributing those publications to cooperating depository libraries throughout the state. SDSL houses state documents back to territorial days.
January brings the start of the 2011 Legislative Session, which begins on January 11. Make sure to tell your local legislators to stop in at the State Library while they are in Pierre. They may be surprised at all of the information available here for their research needs during session. You and your patrons can follow the legislative session happenings from the Legislative Research Council Web site. From this page, you can follow bills, find current legislators, search the SD Codified Laws online, and find out meeting schedules for legislative committees, house and senate daily agendas and much more.
As you gear up for library improvement projects in 2011 and beyond, remember that the State Library has a grants searching collection and database for use. Also, the State Library will launch its new and improved Web site in January. If you have questions about where to find something on the research pages, don’t hesitate to call us and we’ll walk you through it. Contact Brenda Hemmelman (email) with any questions.