Action Plan July 1, 2018--June 30, 2021

Action Plan
July 1, 2018 – June 30, 2021


The South Kingstown Public Library provides free, convenient and equal access to print and non-print materials, services and technologies that support our community’s informational, educational, cultural and recreational needs.


To treat all library users fairly and equally and serve as a forum for all points of view.
To provide high demand/high interest materials in a variety of formats for persons of all ages.
To serve as a center for free, timely and accurate information for all residents in their pursuit of job-related, educational and personal interests.
To assist residents of all ages in the pursuit of life-long learning by offering a variety of programs and other enrichment opportunities.
To strive to provide a welcoming library environment and maintain buildings that are clean, comfortable, safe, and accessible to the community.
 Town of South Kingstown: Established 1658, Incorporated 1723
 Population of 30,639
 Land Area of 56.98 square miles
 Water Area of 5.32 square miles
 2.9% of state population; 24% of Washington County population

A good school system, and the availability of excellent recreational facilities as well as a sizable number of active civic, cultural, and community organizations, make South Kingstown an attractive community in which to live. Summer tourism expands the local population, as people are attracted to the beaches and other natural areas.

 3 public libraries
 1 public high school, 2 public middle schools, 4 public elementary schools
 23 public parks and facilities

According to the 2010 census, 35.5% of the Town's residents are between the ages of 15-34; 13.9% are under the age of 14; 30.9% are between the ages of 35-59; and 19.6% are 60 years of age or older. In addition, the educational level of the residents far exceeds the state average. Of the Town's population 25 years and older, 93.71% are high school graduates and 50.6% have had four or more years of college while only 82.34 of the state's population have completed high school and 28.4% four or more years of college.

 $72,021 Median household income
 2.4 Average household size
 2,318 Seasonal housing units, 17.5% of total
 612 Affordable housing units, 5.61 % of total

The University of Rhode Island is the single largest employer and exerts a considerable impact on the area. URI enrollment for the 2017-2018 academic year stands at 16,724 students, (comprised of 14,726 undergraduates and 1,998 graduate students). This enrollment is supported by a full time teaching faculty of 669, further assisted by 407 part-time faculty members. URI is the tenth largest employer in the State of Rhode Island, with 2,577 faculty and staff. Besides URI, major employers in the Town include Schneider Electric and South County Hospital.
The increase in growth, along with the fact that the educational level of the residents is so high, affects the level of library services needed to support the population. South Kingstown is a community with a strong tradition of library usage. This three-year action plan will continue this tradition and address the impact of continued growth and development within the community on library service.

Library Profile
A 1975 town ordinance established the South Kingstown Public Library, uniting three independent libraries. A free public library, the South Kingstown Public Library is comprised of a central library (Peace Dale) and two branch libraries (Robert Beverly Hale and Kingston Free). A seven-member Board of Trustees appointed by the Town Council governs the Library. Annual operating revenues are derived from the local property tax appropriation, private endowments, overdue fines, and the state grant-in-aid, appropriated under R.I.G.L. 29-6-9.

 Department Budget: $1,218,315
 2016-2017 Budget: $30.6 million
 9 full-time, 22 part-time employees

The South Kingstown Public Library operates with a Library Director under the direction of the Board of Trustees. The library staff consists of nine full-time and twenty-one part-time employees including eight full-time professional librarians. The Library is open 130 concurrent hours and 60 unique hours per week to the 30,639 residents of South Kingstown.

2016-2017 at a glance
 10,270 Library card holders
 284,708 Total visits to 3 libraries
 71,442 Visits to Kingston Free Library
 193,186 Visits to Peace Dale Library
 20,080 Visits to Robert Beverly Hale Library
 Circulation of 216,904
 26,264 Reference transactions
 770 Programs offered
 15,373 Program attendance
 667 Reservations of 3 meeting rooms
 29,972 Public internet sessions
 79,701 Print materials in collection; 2.59 print materials per capita
 72,856 Audio and e-books in collection; 2.37 audio and e-books per capita
Identifiable community needs for library service in South Kingstown are:

 A central library with strong reference services, fiction, and non-fiction collections to serve the needs of adults, young adults and children.
 Branch libraries providing neighborhood access to services.
 Adult, young adult and children’s collections accessible in formats (print, non-print, electronic) that are relevant to the patrons' needs and interests.
 High quality reference/readers' advisory service in-house, by telephone, and via e-mail.
 Programs for adults, families, school-aged children and preschoolers.
 Collections that support the curricula of students in grades K–12.
 Access to materials through interlibrary loan.
 Access to electronic resources through subscription databases and those available on the Internet.
 Hours of service that meet community needs.
 Adequate and safe parking.
 Library service in the community through outreach programs.
 Meeting space for community groups and organizations.


The South Kingstown Public Library is a tax-supported public library serving the residents of South Kingstown. Complying with standards established by the Library of Rhode Island (LORI) and the American Library Association, the Library also provides service to other Rhode Island residents and visitors and to those residing outside of the state network.

REFERENCE SERVICE: Reference service is available during regular library hours. Staff responds to requests received in person, by telephone, in writing, and via e-mail.

RESEARCH AND REFERRAL SERVICES: Every effort is made to assist with research, time and staff permitting.

CIRCULATION SERVICE: Direct borrowing privileges are available to patrons holding valid Ocean State Libraries cards. The Library complies with Ocean State Libraries policies and procedures.

STATEWIDE NETWORK SERVICES: All circulating materials are available for borrowing through Ocean State Libraries HOLDS and through interlibrary loan, in compliance with LORI standards and the ALA Interlibrary Loan Code. Remote access to the Library’s holdings is made possible through the library’s membership in Ocean State Libraries.

MEETING ROOMS: Meeting rooms are available at both the Peace Dale and Kingston Free Libraries. Please contact individual libraries for rules and regulations that govern the use of the meeting rooms.

RESERVES: Materials can be reserved in person, by telephone, and online from within the Library or from a remote location using the Library’s website. Notification is by telephone, e-mail, mail or text.

DISPLAYS AND EXHIBITS: The Library makes exhibit space available as described in the South Kingstown Public Library Exhibit and Display Policy adopted by the Board of Trustees in December 1994. Exhibitors must insure or assume responsibility for items exhibited.

PROGRAMS: The Library offers a variety of educational and cultural programs for patrons of all ages. Library programs are free and open to the public.


GOAL 1: To provide materials in a variety of formats both physical and virtual for persons of all ages that are relevant to the community’s evolving needs and interests


 Conduct bi-annual patron survey (print and electronic) to determine patron usage and wants
1. Target “captive group locations” i.e. election day, community events
2. Post survey on website, social media and send email blast
3. Establish an annual focus group

 Collection development and maintenance
1. Review and streamline current Collection Development Policy
2. Continue with ongoing evaluation of all collections, identifying strengths and weaknesses
3. Review circulation statistics to determine high demand/interest areas
4. Purchase materials that will support curricula of grades K-12
5. Review and update R.I. and Local History Collection Policy
6. Add 1 (one) electronic resource per year
7. Analyze current usage of Non-English materials and increase diversity of collection to meet existing and potential needs

GOAL 2: To serve as a center for free, timely and accurate information for all residents in their pursuit of job-related, educational, and personal enrichment opportunities.


 Programming
1. Conduct a minimum 12 (twelve) informational, cultural or adult educational programs per year
2. Create program exit survey and conduct ongoing informal surveys after each program

 Technology
1. Review and update current technology plan
2. Increase one-on-one technology programs by 10%
3. Hold at least 1 (one) drop-in technology help day per year
4. Hold a least 2 (two) technology classes (i.e. Word, Excel, etc.) per year
5. Explore emerging technologies that can be used to enhance library resources

 Workforce and economic development
1. Reach out to Chamber of Commerce to help identify needs of business community
2. Reach out to community agencies (i.e. Jonnycake Center, Thundermist Health Center, etc.) to determine where library can assist with needed resources or training
3. Investigate new resources (print and electronic) and maintain current collection to support career readiness and life skills

GOAL 3: To assist residents of all ages in the pursuit of life-long learning by offering a variety of free and equitable programs, services, and technologies.


 Professional Development
1. Provide all staff with appropriate ongoing in-house training
2. Provide a minimum of 1 (one) in-house Ocean State Libraries network training per year for all staff
3. Budget to provide opportunity for professional staff to attend network training and workshops
4. Review job descriptions to ensure they reflect appropriate job duties and relevancy

 Develop and enhance community partnerships
1. Review current partners and identify possible new partners
2. With the assistance of the Board of Trustees, partner with at least 1 (one) new community agency per year
3. With the assistance of the Board of Trustees, participate in at least 1 (one) community event per year

 Outreach
1. With the assistance of the Board of Trustees, hold a minimum of 1 (one) speaking engagement to outside group for awareness of library services
2. With the assistance of the Board of Trustees, identify outside agencies to offer outreach sessions to learn how to use library services
3. With the assistance of the Board of Trustees, identify opportunities to set up “library information tables” at businesses, outside agencies and events throughout the year

GOAL 4: To provide a welcoming library environment and maintain buildings which are clean, comfortable, safe, and accessible to all members of the community.


 Buildings and Grounds
1. Annually submit needed Capital Improvement Projects to Town
2. Add at least 1 (one) building maintenance item to Champlin Foundation request each year

 Use of space
1. Start R.F.P. process for a feasibility study for maximizing the use of space at the Peace Dale Library by 2020

 Parking
1. Conduct preliminary assessment of parking at Peace Dale
2. Initiate conversation with URI campus officials regarding parking at Kingston Free
3. Conduct preliminary assessment of parking and signage at Hale

 Safety and accessibility
1. Continue to update Disaster Plan
2. Investigate security training for staff
3. Add additional cameras at Peace Dale and Kingston
4. Develop strategy for serving people with disabilities

GOAL 5: To raise community awareness and usage of library materials, programs and services

 Marketing
1. Identify strengths and weaknesses in current practices
2. Continue to produce monthly newsletter
3. Send a minimum of 4 (four) email blasts per year
4. Encourage staff and Trustees to be word of mouth advocates for library services and events

 Website/Social Media
1. Use pictures and video that highlight past and current events
2. Investigate low-cost promotional opportunities on Facebook
3. Investigate other outlets and tools (e.g. Twitter, Instagram, online registrations etc.)

 Events/Outreach
1. Hold adult and children’s programming meetings for staff on regular basis
2. Hold large community event at least once a year
3. Conduct pop-up libraries at various community locations

 Advocacy and value of the Library
1. Participate in Library Week annually
2. With the assistance of the Board of Trustees, actively seek exposure for services and programming from local media outlets and figures
3. Develop basic “elevator speech” for staff and Trustees


The plan will be reassessed annually to evaluate progress and modify objectives.

Spring 2019.

Approved Board of Trustees July 2009, July 2012, June 2018