[Libs-Or] LTLO October 2010

Ferol Weyand ferol.weyand at state.or.us
Fri Oct 1 15:14:54 PDT 2010

Letter To Libraries Online

An Electronic Newsletter from the Oregon State Library.......Volume 20, Issue 10, October 2010

Library Board News

At a special phone meeting on September 13th, the State Library Board approved a plan for a second round of cuts to the agency's 2009-11 budget. A reduction of $156,780 was made in June in response to an order from Governor Kulongoski for across the board cuts in most agencies. A second round was ordered by the Governor on August 26th. The reductions are a response to continued forecasts of declining state General Fund revenue. The State Library's reduction target for this new round of reductions was $102,204. The Board approved $20,800 in reductions in Talking Book and Braille Services (TBABS). The remaining $81,404 in reductions was made to the Ready to Read Grant program. This reduction will bring the FY11 grants down to a total of $529,972, a 26% reduction to the grants made in FY10. The plan that the Board approved was submitted to the Department of Administrative Services on September 14th and was approved by the Governor on September 27th. The next state revenue forecast will be released by the State Economist on November 19, 2010.


At their meeting on October 15, 2010, in Salem, the State Library Board will hold a public hearing and deliberate on changes to the Library's Administrative Rules. The proposed changes<http://www.oregon.gov/OSL/adminrules.shtml> would reduce the number of state document depository libraries by one and make other minor changes to the administrative rules concerning the state document depository program. Another proposed change would modify the way that libraries might be assessed to partially support the L-net virtual reference program in the future. A public hearing on the changes will be held at 11:00 a.m. Written testimony may be sent to Jim Scheppke<mailto:jim.b.scheppke at state.or.us> by email prior to the public hearing.

In addition to the public hearing and deliberations on rule changes, the Board will hear recommendations from the LSTA Advisory Council about competitive grant awards in 2011 and other elements of the LSTA program. The Board will also conduct the annual evaluation of the State Librarian and conduct the annual post-transaction review of agency head financial transactions. An open forum will be held at 1:00 p.m. Anyone may address the Board in the open forum on any topic. The meeting will be held in Room 102 at the State Library, beginning at 9:30 a.m.
State Library News

The Government Research Services team is pleased to announce the completion of phase one of the Online Voters Pamphlet Project<http://library.state.or.us/databases/subjects/Voters_Pamphlet.php>. Over the past year, staff have scanned all general and special election pamphlets for Marion County. This treasure trove of historical information includes most statewide races and voter initiatives since the pamphlets began in 1904. The original pamphlets are newsprint and can be quite fragile. Finding specific content can also be difficult unless you know the exact election that contains the information you need. The online site resolves these challenges. Each pamphlet is scanned as a PDF document. All the content is searchable using a Google custom search engine installed on the pamphlet site. Since the availability of the pamphlets was announced earlier this month, many researchers and librarians have responded enthusiastically. One journalist wrote, "I just can't help myself from reading through more back issues of the Oregon Voters Pamphlet." Phase two of the project will be digitizing and indexing the Marion county primaries. This project should begin in early 2011. For more information, contact Dave Hegeman<mailto:dave.b.hegeman at state.or.us>.

Talking Book and Braille Services has more than 80% of the books for 2010-2011's Battle of the Books on digital audio cartridge and downloadable audio (BARD). Some titles are even available in Braille format. We have copies on hand and ready to loan to registered patrons so call to reserve your student's books today. You can reach us Monday through Friday at 800-452-0292. A friendly Reader's Advisor is on hand now waiting to take your book order. If your student isn't registered yet for Talking Books, download an application at http://www.tbabs.org and mail in the original. We'll process the application and get materials in your student's hands within a few days. If you have any questions call 800-452-0292.


Teachers, Librarians, Teacher-Librarians-lend us your ears. The school year has just gotten underway and many of you are looking at, working with, and trying to fill school reading lists for your visually and physically impaired students. Talking Book and Braille Services has access to many titles commonly found on student reading lists. Share those lists with TBABS and we'll review our collection and make sure to have those books on hand to loan to Oregon students. We have many titles in many formats such as, digital cartridge, downloadable audio (BARD), audio cassette, Braille, and web-Braille. Send your reading lists to Elke Bruton<mailto:elke.bruton at state.or.us> or to Oregon State Library, 250 Winter St NE, Salem, OR 97301.
Other Library News

Operating funds and a bond measure for Oregon public libraries will be at issue on the November 2nd general election ballot. Perhaps the most important election will take place in Hood River County, where library supporters are trying to bounce back from an election defeat in May and reopen the Hood River County Library, closed since July 1st. Voters in the county will decide on creating a new special library district with a permanent tax rate of 39 cents per $1,000 assessed valuation. This rate is much lower than the 70 cents per $1,000 rate that was voted down in May. The new financial plan for the Library was developed by Hood River Mayor Arthur Babitz and other library supporters. The rate is expected to raise about $643,500 annually, which is less than the average county support the library has received in recent years. Babitz told the County Commissioners that the library will need to make up for having less tax revenue by making greater use of volunteers and fund-raising.

Also on the November ballot is a renewal of the 17 cent per $1,000 local option levy for the Washington County Cooperative Library Services. The levy provides operating funds and cooperative services to all of the public libraries in Washington County. In Multnomah County voters will be asked to amend the county charter to enable the commissioners to put a library district measure on the ballot at some future date. The Multnomah County Library currently gets its operating funds from a five year local option levy and from the county General Fund. In Damascus voters will get a chance to annex to the Library Service District of Clackamas County that was formed two years ago. At that time the City of Damascus opted out of the district and city residents lost their public library service. In Lake County, voters will be asked to approve a bond measure that would provide the last of the funding needed to complete a new library in Lakeview in addition to a new branch in Christmas Valley.


In 2006, the Heritage Health Index identified millions of items in the nation's cultural institutions that were in danger due to poor conditions, lack of training, and other causes. As a result of the study, the Institute for Museum & Library Services made funds available to states for planning purposes. With a grant from the IMLS, Oregon museums, libraries and other cultural institutions are planning together for Oregon's preservation training needs. The C2C grant project's Steering Committee and project coordinator, Ruth Metz, have held five regional meetings to gather information about the training needs of those who work with Oregon's heritage collections. These regional meetings will help the Steering Committee structure a statewide survey to verify and quantify preservation training needs across museums, libraries, and archives. Look for the survey in October and the survey report in December. What then? The survey report will be the launching pad for an Oregon heritage leadership summit in January 2011. The summit will result in an action plan for improving heritage collections through training. For more information contact Ruth Metz, the Project Coordinator (503-422-8024), or go to the C2C project blog<http://orc2c.blogspot.com>.


The Hillsboro Public Library and the Lake Oswego Public Library have been chosen to be among the first 30 public libraries in the U.S. to partner with Sony on a project to make library users more aware of the advantages of e-books. The Sony Reader Library Program was announced this year at the American Library Association Conference. The State Library worked with the Oregon Digital Library Consortium to select the libraries to be among a handful of libraries in the U.S. to pilot test the program. The libraries will each receive four Sony Readers to demonstrate to staff and to library users. Two of the devices will be tethered to a free-standing floor display. The libraries will also receive staff training from Sony and other materials to promote e-books. Once Sony completes the pilot test at the initial libraries and gets feedback, they plan to offer the program nationwide to as many as 30 libraries a month. "This validates the State Library Board's investments this year to jumpstart the availability of e-books on Library2Go," said State Librarian Jim Scheppke. "I think Oregon is now seen as a leader in lending e-books from our public libraries."


This year eleven of the fifteen Washington County Cooperative Library Services (WCCLS) member libraries offered an adult summer reading program to local residents. For many parents this provided an excellent opportunity to model for their children the value of reading not only for its educational value, but for enjoyment. Just over 2,000 adults participated in the 2010 program. All fifteen WCCLS member libraries continued to provide youth and teen summer reading programs - reaching 25,784 participants. Each year the youth and teens are given the opportunity of setting their own reading goals for the summer - with several incentives provided to encourage them to achieve these goals. Incentives include such things as free tickets to a Portland Trail Blazers game or discounted admission to Oaks Amusement Park. This year fifty-two percent of all participants reached their reading goals (13,471 kids). By contrast, just over 17,000 kids participated in the reading program during the summer of 2005 with 9,013 meeting their reading goals.


In September, the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that Oregon laws designed to prevent sexually explicit literature from being provided to minors was unconstitutional, overturning a lower court decision. Powells Books, the ACLU and other organizations have been seeking to overturn the law, adopted in 2007. The court ruled that "speech that is neither obscene as to youths nor subject to some other legitimate proscription cannot be suppressed solely to protect the young from ideas or images that a legislative body thinks unsuitable for them." The ruling does not affect libraries because the Oregon Library Association worked hard to exempt libraries from the legislation. OLA Lobbyist Nan Heim and OLA member Candace Morgan served on a work group that drafted the bill, at the request of the bill's sponsor. Nan Heim recalls that, "When Governor Kulongoski signed the bill, he held a news conference in the children's room of the downtown Central Library," in Portland. At press time the Oregon Department of Justice had not decided whether to appeal the Federal court ruling to a higher court.
P.S. (From the State Librarian)

We get a newspaper clipping service at the State Library, and I can always tell when the statewide Summer Reading Program is winding down by the size of the packet of clippings I get every week or so. In the summer the packet is fat. Local newspapers love to cover summer reading. It makes for such good photo opportunities. Who doesn't love a picture of kids getting turned on to books?

By now our clippings packets have returned to normal. But all indications are that Oregon public libraries served many thousands of Oregon children with activities and incentives to promote their engagement with books over the summer. We won't have the numbers for a few months yet, but last year we know over 177,000 Oregon children participated in our statewide Summer Reading Program. I expect that this year the number will be higher.

While 177,000 sounds like a lot of kids, we could be serving a lot more. According to the latest estimates from the Population Research Center at Portland State University there are about 496,000 children ages 5 to 14 in Oregon, the prime demographic for summer reading.

There is more and more education research that shows that summer reading is key to having a child become a proficient reader. A recent book, Summer Reading: Program and Evidence, by Fay Shin and Stephen Krashen (Pearson, 2008), summarizes the research and makes a startling claim that summer reading may explain most of the so-called "achievement gap" in reading performance between minority and low-income children and other children:

"Studies show that children of the poor and children of higher-income families show similar growth over the school year; children from higher-income families, however, make much more progress over the summer. Over time, the contribution of summer reading growth appears to be enough to account for the difference in performance on reading tests between these two groups of children (p. 19)."

And why do higher-income children read more? It's simple, according to the research. They have more access to books. There is a myth out there that some children are "reluctant readers." The reality is that they just need a good librarian to engage them with books that fit their interests and reading level.

In Oregon, as in most states, the reading achievement gap is large. For example, in the 2009 National Assessment of Education Progress 8th grade reading test, Latino students in Oregon scored 22 points below white students, and students qualifying for free and reduced-price lunches also had an average score 22 points below students who did not qualify.

Beginning with this year's class of high school juniors, passing the state reading test will be a graduation requirement for all Oregon students. Shouldn't that fact alone, coupled with the research on the importance of summer reading, motivate us to reach out and try to have every Oregon child participate in the Oregon Summer Reading Program? - Jim Scheppke
Contacts at the Oregon State Library

Library Development: 503-378-2525, MaryKay Dahlgreen<mailto:marykay.dahlgreen at state.or.us>, Mary Mayberry<mailto:mary.l.mayberry at state.or.us>, Darci Hanning<mailto:darci.hanning at state.or.us>, Ann Reed<mailto:ann.reed at state.or.us>, Jennifer Maurer<mailto:jennifer.maurer at state.or.us>, Katie Anderson<mailto:katie.anderson at state.or.us>.

Talking Book and Braille Services: 503-378-5389, Susan Westin<mailto:susan.b.westin at state.or.us>.

Government Research Services: 503-378-5030, Robert Hulshof-Schmidt<mailto:robert.hulshof-schmidt at state.or.us>.

State Librarian: 503-378-4367, Jim Scheppke<mailto:jim.b.scheppke at state.or.us>.

LTLO Editor: 503-378-2464, Ferol Weyand <mailto:Ferol.Weyand at state.or.us> . Letter to Libraries Online is published monthly by the Oregon State Library. Editorial office: LTLO, Oregon State Library, 250 Winter St. NE, Salem, Oregon 97301-3950, 503-378-2464, editor: Ferol Weyand<mailto:Ferol.Weyand at state.or.us> . Letter to Libraries Online is available free of charge and is available only in electronic form on the publications page at the Oregon State Library's homepage: http://www.oregon.gov/OSL. Opinions expressed in the articles are those of the authors and not necessarily those of the Oregon State Library. News items or articles should be sent to Ferol Weyand<mailto:Ferol.Weyand at state.or.us> , or mailed to LTLO, Oregon State Library, 250 Winter St. NE, Salem, Oregon 97301-3950.

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