State Library Services Updates

Updates from State Library Services

August 2019 

Updates from State Library Services

Students Reading

All Are Welcome 2

Minnesota’s cities and towns are rapidly diversifying. Libraries, like other government institutions, are expected to respond to diverse community needs. By assessing and adapting library services with an equity lens, libraries can provide responsive, quality library services to all Minnesotans.

State Library Services is hosting All Are Welcome: Inclusive Outreach and Participatory Engagement for Advancing Racial Equity in Libraries for library leaders and front-line staff. This free workshop builds on the 2018 All Are Welcome: The Role of Libraries in Advancing Racial Equity workshop presented in 2018. Participants will learn how to implement inclusive outreach and public engagement policies and apply an equity framework to outreach materials and strategies using discussion and hands-on activities. Participants will gain a deeper understanding of culturally inclusive dynamics that will attract racially diverse communities to their library.

Workshop Objectives

  • Understand the role government has played in creating racial inequity
  • Become familiar with inclusive outreach and community engagement principles and how libraries are applying them
  • Begin to develop Inclusive Engagement strategies

Workshop Dates and Locations
This free workshop is repeated in three locations:

  • Monday, September 23, 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., Buckham Memorial Library, 11 Division Street E, Faribault, MN
  • Monday, September 30, 2019, 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., Fergus Falls Public Library, 205 East Hampden Ave., Fergus Falls, MN
  • Thursday, October 17, 2019, 9 a.m. to 3:45 p.m., Rondo Community Outreach Library, Saint Paul, Minnesota

Workshops are limited to 50 participants each. To attend, please complete the All Are Welcome registration form. If you have questions about the workshop, contact Hannah Buckland, Library Development Specialist at State Library Services (651-582-8792).

Workshop leaders

Gordon Goodwin, Midwest Regional Project Manager for the Government Alliance on Race and Equity (GARE), leads the workshop. Gordon has worked for 30 years with and for foundations, community development organizations and public/private sector consortia in metropolitan and rural settings to promote racial justice.

Jane Eastwood, Consultant, Independent Racial Equity and Libraries, is a co-presenter. Eastwood is the former Library Director for the St. Paul Public Library and Education Director for the City of St. Paul.

Minnesota Public Library website visits 2018, 28.5million with 61% not reporting, 39% reporting.

Public Library Website Visits

In 2018, 39 percent of Minnesota’s public library reported 28.5 million website visits. Visits represent the annual number of sessions initiated by all users from inside or outside the library to the library website. The library website consists of all webpages under the library’s domain excluding social media accounts.

Traditional output measures such as visits, circulation, and program attendance are increasingly inadequate to capture the wide variety of ways that people use their public library. A growing number of people use library services via library websites without ever entering the building, and some of those who visit the building use the library website during their visit. Library websites provide a tremendous amount of information in and of themselves as well as access to electronic materials and collections. Tracking website visits adds a more accurate measure of current public library use.

Public libraries voluntarily reported the number of visits to their websites beginning with the 2018 Minnesota Public Library Report. This performance measure will be required for all public libraries nationwide in 2019 and will be reported in the Public Libraries in the United States Survey issued by the Institute of Museum and Library Services. 2018 was a trial collection year in which libraries voluntarily reported the data.

Library Services and Technology Act Grants, 2019 Announced

We are looking forward to working with a new round of grantees on a variety of innovative and interesting projects. It is always exciting to see the progress libraries make in meeting community needs.

See more on the LSTA webpage.

Updates from our Partners

Be a Minnesota Book Awards Judge!

The Friends of the Saint Paul Public Library is now accepting applications to serve as a judge for the 32nd annual Minnesota Book Awards. Prospective judges are encouraged to put their name forward in any or several of these nine categories: Children’s Literature, General Nonfiction, Genre Fiction, Memoir & Creative Nonfiction, Middle Grade Literature, Minnesota Nonfiction, Novel & Short Story, Poetry, and Young Adult Literature.

Qualified candidates will have professional expertise - or useful personal experiences - that allow them to judge the artistic merit, originality, and audience appeal of their category’s books. Judges agree to read all entries (between 25-40, depending on category and year), and be present in Saint Paul to meet in person with their panel’s two other judges.

  • Preliminary Round: Reading/assessment beginning in mid-September, and culminating in a panel meeting on January 25, 2020
  • Final Round: Reading/assessment beginning in early February and culminating with a panel meeting on March 14, 2020

The Friends offers a modest $350 stipend to offset the time commitment associated with reading and judging. Mileage reimbursement is also available. Applicants from Greater Minnesota are particularly encouraged to apply. Application Deadline is September 13. Learn more, and apply, at The Friends. For more information, contact David Katz (651-366-6492).

Data Pathways

At this year’s American Library Association’s annual conference, the Public Library Association hosted a “News You Can Use Session” about a collaboration with Colorado State Library’s Library Research Service. A group of ALA Emerging Leaders developed a site to help library staff find information about data training opportunities.  If you are interested in learning more about library data, check out ALA’s Data Pathways webpage.

Share your Diversity Book Lists

Syracuse University School of Information Studies is indexing diversity book lists. The project called "List of Lists: An Index of Diversity Book Lists for Adults" is funded by the American Library Association’s Carnegie-Whitney Grant and aims to advance the good work of diversity book lists by collecting and indexing lists into a faceted-search website where librarians and library users can search for lists organized around particular components of diversity. They seek diversity book lists made between 2016 and the present that cover a wide range of diversities: indigeneity, LGBTQ+, race and ethnicity, religion, gender, aging, disability, social and economic conditions such as incarceration, immigration, and diverse family structures.

Libraries can share their diversity book lists, LibGuides, or similar resources publicly available online using Google form  by September 1, 2019. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact Sayward Schoonmaker, MLIS, Syracuse University or Rachel Ivy Clarke, Assistant Professor, Syracuse University School of Information Studies.

About State Library Services

State Library Services, a division of the Minnesota Department of Education (MDE), partners with libraries to achieve equity and excellence in our collective work for Minnesotans. Division staff are consultants who help libraries plan, develop and implement high-quality services that address community needs. State Library Services administers federal grant, state aid, and state grant programs that benefit all types of libraries.