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Unattended Children in the Library

Purpose

The William Fogg Library welcomes children of all ages to use its facilities and services. We want the library to be a warm and inviting place to develop a love of books, reading, and the library.  In an effort to ensure the safety and well being of the children and maintain an atmosphere of constructive library use, the following policy regarding appropriate use of the library by children and their caregivers is adopted.

Policy

Responsibility for the welfare and the behavior of children using the library rests with the parent/guardian or an assigned chaperone.  Young children should never be left unattended in the library. The staff cannot know if children are leaving the building with their parents or with strangers.  The library cannot and does not assume responsibility or liability for children while they are at the library.   In order to create an environment of safety, and maintain an atmosphere where reading and study can be encouraged, the following policy has been created:

  1. Parents or guardians are responsible for the behavior of their children in the library, and may not leave children under the age of 10 unattended.
  2. The parents of children under the age of ten should be at the library during the program. 
  3. The library cannot and does not assume responsibility or liability for children in the library.
  4. When children are attending library programs, parent(s) must be aware of the times of the programs, so their children (over the age of ten) do not have to wait for unreasonable amounts of time to be picked up. Parent(s) should tell their older children to wait inside the building to avoid the hazards of the street.
  5. Children age 10 and older may be left unattended at the discretion of their parent(s) for a period of time (not to exceed 2 hours) to complete homework assignments or special projects. Children left unattended should know how to reach a parent or guardian, and parents should pick up their children ten minutes before the closing time of the library. 
  6. If a problem arises with children of any age and we are unable to locate the parent(s) or if the library is closing and the parent(s) cannot be located, the police will be called at the discretion of the staff.
  7. It is the policy of the Library that staff members will not transport children from the library to any other location.
  8. If children are left unattended repeatedly and/or for long periods of time, the staff will notify parent(s) of the library’s policies. Parents of children who are being left for long periods of time will be contacted by the staff.