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HB 196 Public Schools and County Boards of Education – Publication of School Library Catalogs

The Maryland Library Association (MLA) and the Maryland Association of Public Library Administrators (MAPLA) stand opposed to HB 196 Public Schools and County Boards of Education – Publication of School Library Catalogs. 

 

The Maryland Library Association (MLA) and the Maryland Association of Public Library Administrators (MAPLA) are writing in opposition to HB 196 Public Schools and County Boards of Education – Publication of School Library Catalogs. The bill would require public school libraries to provide a list of titles in their catalog to the county Board of Education which would in turn, “compile certain information” to be posted on the Board's website. Additionally, each public school would be required to annually inform the parents and guardians where certain information on the school library's catalog could be found.
Library catalogs for Maryland public schools are accessible through school websites.In cases where this access is not easily found, it is usually in schools where the position of school librarian is underfunded. We would support a bill that provides better funding for school librarians and requires a full-time librarian at every school. School library catalogs are available 24/7 for student access and any member of the public or any parent/caregiver who wishes to search for a title or subject. School library catalogs have been available online for many years. This bill is unnecessary for providing public access, indeed, that is a fundamental role of libraries: providing access to information. This does not need to be codified by law.

Read the full letter here.

 

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