Material Selection


The responsibility of material selection is delegated to the youth, teen, and adult librarians respectively. They are guided by the principles set forth in this policy and overseen by the library director, who has final responsibility for selections.

Selection Aids

Reviewing sources for materials selection include, but are not necessarily limited to, the following publications: Kirkus Reviews, Publishers Weekly, Library Journal, Booklist, and, School Library Journal. Wherever possible, previewing of materials is desirable.

Patron’s Request for Materials

All requests from patrons for specific titles or subjects will be considered. Positive reviews for these requests are sought from the reviewing sources listed above. If there is adequate demand or interest in a title or subject, an item with unfavorable or mixed reviews may be purchased.

Specialized Materials

Patrons requesting specialized materials will be referred to other library collections if the Library is unable to obtain the materials through interlibrary loan. The Library provides supplementary materials for students and information for specialists in a limited number of fields. The library recognizes the resources of other community providers and therefore avoids unnecessary duplication in subject areas that are covered by other community resources, such as the schools and the Grosse Pointe Historical Society.

Multiple Copies

The library recognizes the need to provide patrons materials in high demand on a timely basis. The staff aims to provide one copy for every three to four reserves for popular print titles. For digital materials, extra copies are added based on cost and hold ratio of copies in the consortium.

Replacement of Materials

The Library does not automatically replace all materials withdrawn from the collection because of damage, loss or wear. In deciding whether to replace such materials, the staff will consider the following factors: number of copies, existence of adequate coverage of a field, current and higher quality titles on the topic, and demand for the particular title or subject. Every effort will be made to replace important titles. Sometimes only reprint or paperback editions of replacement titles are available and will be purchased to fill the need. In some cases, when cost, estimated wear and sturdiness of the reprint warrant it, replacement by reprint is preferred. In other cases, rebinding may be the more effective solution.


The same criteria used to select purchased items shall be applied to donations of gift materials.

The library can accept only such gifts as will justify their inclusion in the collection. Inclusion will be based upon patron interest, processing costs, and availability of shelf space. Gifts and donations that are not accepted for the collection will be sold, donated to needy organizations, or discarded unless the donor requests return of the same.


Processing and shelving of materials shall in no way reflect a value judgment of the materials. There will be no labeling of any item or of its bibliographic record to indicate a particular point of view or bias. The Library assures free access to its holdings.

Selecting Controversial Materials

The Library shall make available materials reflecting the widest diversity of views and expression, including those which are unorthodox or unpopular with a majority or minority group. Materials will not be proscribed or removed from the library because of partisan or doctrinal interests. In no case will materials be excluded from the library collection because of the race, nationality, religious views, personal history or political affiliations of the author.

The Library will not remove or restrict library materials solely because of frankness of language and content or because of the possibility that materials may inadvertently come into the possession of children. Parents or legal guardians are responsible for what their children are reading.

The Library Board of Trustees respects the diversity of beliefs and values within the community which it represents. A process exists for those individuals who may raise what they consider to be legitimate objections to the library materials selected for use in the public library.

Patron’s Request for Review of Materials

A library patron who verbally questions the inclusion of materials in the collection shall be referred to a librarian. The librarian will discuss any concern and will provide a verbal explanation of the library’s selection policy. If the concern cannot be resolved through discussion, the patron will be asked to complete the “Patron’s Request for Reconsideration of Library Materials” form to the right. Reconsideration request forms will only be accepted by library cardholders or those eligible for a Grosse Pointe library card.

The Assistant Director will appoint two or more librarians to review the material in question and to submit independent reports to the Assistant Director on their findings with a recommendation regarding the disposition of the material. The materials will remain in circulation until a final decision is made by the Assistant Director. The Assistant Director will notify the library patron of the decision in writing.

Citizens who are not satisfied with the response may request that the Director of Libraries review their request. The decision of the Director is final.

Budget Impact

Funds are allocated annually to each service area and library departments must make purchases within these budget constraints. It is expected that each service area will give due consideration to its reference collection and its circulating materials - popular, standard and scholarly.

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