Story by press reporter Shannon Taylor
Ned R. McWherter Weakley County Library director Candy McAdams told the board that they had received a $1102.00 technology grant from the Tennessee State Library and Archives. The project was made possible by the Institute for Museum and Library Services. The scholarship is a 50/50 match scholarship. The grant was awarded because technology has become a fundamental service that libraries provide to the community to gain equal access to the internet and online services needed in daily life.
The library’s mission statement for implementing the technology plan reads: “The mission of the Ned R. McWherter Weakley County Library is to provide all Weakley County citizens with free and equal access to popular, exciting resources and services. The technology provided will greatly improve the services that the library offers to all users. With access to the world outside of Weakley County, all citizens can make informed decisions that lead to more productive lives.”
The library plan is designed to guide technological development in the library for the next three years. It will support the library’s mission statement minimum requirements, stimulate discussion about the community’s technology needs, and provide a structure for planning and budgeting over the next three years.
The library’s goals include providing Internet access by the fastest and most cost effective means for guest and staff use, providing Wi-Fi access to all areas of the library and property, the library’s hardware, software and network meet the library’s needs, maintain eight public access, four laptops, four workstations, five jetpacks and four Chromebooks, train well-trained staff on how to use technology to improve library services, provide access to a color printer, copier and scanner, and Provide ongoing technology for library patrons Training and support for library patrons’ personal electronic devices where library software is involved.
Implementation of the library’s technology plan will be presented to the board, which is scheduled for approval in January 2023.
In other news, Pam Kruzich left the library $25,000.00 in her will, but according to Chair Tommy Moore, it could take months to settle things and distribute the money. The board also wants the Friends of the Library group to get going again and will be working on plans to get this going in the coming months. The upstairs library carpet was completed by Paint Plus in Paris. The library also plans to take bids for a landscaping project ahead of time and will be sending out notices before spring.
The library held 216 programs this quarter, attended by 1,671 people. They had 2,832 visitors and answered 1,871 reference questions. There were 321 computer uses and 3,331 wireless sessions. The book club met twice and discussed Julia Kelley’s ‘Last Garden in England’ and Frederick Bachman’s ‘Anxious Men’.
Upcoming events include the Discovery Park of America Lego Contest, which will see all of the area’s libraries participate. This competition has the November theme “Your Community of Opportunity” and entries must be submitted by November 11th. There are five age categories including 0-5, 6-11, 12-18 and adults. The size limit is 10 x 10 x 18 inches in all directions, kits are not allowed and prizes include one-day entry to DPA and grand prize one-year membership to DPA.
The library holds their pumpkin decorating contest and provides pumpkins for the contestants. Entries must be submitted by October 26, 5:00 p.m. The pumpkins cannot be carved or cut.
There will be a virtual book review with Temple Grandin, but a date has not yet been set. Grandin is a scientist, academic and animal behaviorist. Grandin is a consultant for the livestock industry, where she offers advice on animal behavior, and is also a spokesperson for autism. She is currently a faculty member in Animal Sciences at Colorado State University’s College of Agricultural Sciences. in 2010, time 100, an annual list of the 100 most influential people in the world, named them in the “Heroes” category. Grandin has been an outspoken supporter of autism rights and neurodiversity movements.
The board will not meet in November.