This past Tuesday, a state senate committee held a public hearing on two bills dealing with school libraries and public libraries. One bill requires school libraries to notify parents of a student under age sixteen of any materials or documents the student checks out no later than twenty-four hours after the checkout. The other bill requires the same thing of public libraries. Current law allows parents to find out what their children are checking out if the parent requests the information.
The assumption in these bills is that parents should know what their children are utilizing in a school library or a public library. The bills basically shift the burden from the parent for getting that information and put it on the libraries. While parents should welcome this approach, many librarians view it as more work and an invasion of children’s privacy.
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