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Collegedale Library begins strategic planning process

With the city of Collegedale undergoing a strategic planning process, the Collegedale Public Library has decided to create its own strategic plan that will direct its future over the next few years.

“This is one of the 10 fastest-growing areas in the state,” said library board chairwoman Paulette Goodman. “We’re still a new institution trying to find our way.”

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Contributed photo

Joy Giles, left, assists her grandson Tristin Giles in using a computer program at the Collegedale Public Library. One area the library anticipates expanding through its strategic plan is the opportunities and programs it offers for children.

Last year the library board surveyed 84 different library patrons who indicated several ways the library might improve over the next few years. The results of that survey will help guide the strategic planning process being chaired by Mary Wagoner-Angelin to provide the institution with goals and strategies to achieve those goals moving forward, said Goodman.

“One of the things that surprised me was how often home-schooling was mentioned [on the survey],” said Goodman. “My question is are we meeting the needs of the home-school community? What do they need? Could we do more?”

Because there were so many comments about home-schooling on the library’s first survey, she said the strategic planning committee will likely include a home-school representative. That committee is still being formed and she said the group hopes to include a wide variety of stakeholders from across the community, from business people to those who do not currently patronize the library.

“We want to know what we can do to attract those people who aren’t patronizing the library and what programs we can provide for those people who are already using the library,” Goodman said. “We know that our most well-attended programs are for children, but we wonder, are we putting our resources to where we get the most results?”

She said more surveys and community interaction will be part of developing the strategic plan. The group plans to have it completed at the same time as the city’s strategic plan this fall.

“The library is a very friendly place where people always get great service,” said Goodman. “Our goal with the strategic plan is to make it even more so a place people want to walk in to find what they need.”

For more information about the library board, the Friends of the Library group or the strategic planning committee, contact the Collegedale Public Library at 396-9322.

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