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Newsletter of the Goshen Public Library

Vol. 6, No. 1, July 2000

"I was there (at the library) on an exciting mission, the discovery of the world"
- Pete Hammill, author

Library Building Update

The library's Board of Trustees voted last October to renew its offer to the county for the purchase of approximately five acres of land on the Salesian property upon which to construct a new library building. The offer did not specify which five acres, leaving the specifics of the site open to negotiation.

The county has responded favorably to this offer, indicating a willingness to include a site for the library in its plan for the property. The majority opinion of the board is that the Salesian property is the optimum choice for a new library. Given this, the board has determined that it will wait for the county to complete its planning process, after which negotiations can be concluded.

The board realizes that this may take some time, as the county has other important issues to resolve (including the completion of the court building and the opening of the jail). In the meantime, our staff is exploring interim solutions to satisfy the library's current space needs.

Child Safety

(reprinted in part from the Independent Republican)
A main concern of the board, evident at recent meetings, is the safety of children using the library. Library policy specifies that children under the age of 10 may not be left at the library unattended.

There is a perception among parents that the library is a safe, comfortable place for children to be on their own. However, the library is actually a crowded public building. Children left alone may become frightened or rambunctious, may leave the building, may be injured by falling on the balcony or stairs, or by colliding with another library visitor. In a crowded space, a small child may easily be stepped on or knocked into. Young children have also been found on their own on library grounds.

The library has no dedicated space for children as is regularly filled beyond capacity after school and during children's program times, when the staff has its hands full attending to the information needs of visitors. Monitoring the behavior of unattended young children, other than at formal programs, is not the staff's responsibility.

It was decided that the library will implement a public information campaign to make parents more aware of our policies specifically relating to children and our concerns for their safety. A revised youth services brochure, which included policies relating to children is now available. A letter has been sent to parents advising them of our concerns, and copies of the revised policies are being distributed to everyone checking out children's materials. Please help us with this very important endeavor by familiarizing yourself with these guidelines.

Staff Profile

Library director Pauline Kehoe came to Goshen in March 1990. A graduate of the charter class of new College (Sarasota, Fla.), she received her MSLS from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. A native of State Island, Ms. Kehoe spent 13 years at Staten Island Community College (now the College of Staten Island) Library before moving to Vermont where she served as the director of the St. Albans Free Library. She returned to New York in 1989, serving for a short time as the adult/young adult services librarian at the Franklin Lakes (NJ) Public Library before coming to Goshen.

Actively involved in the Director's Association of the Ramapo Catskill Library System and vice-president/president elect of the Public Library Section of the New York Library Association, her greatest hopes are that the state will provide real aid for public library construction and that Goshen will soon acquire a site for the expanded library service it so richly deserves. Drawn to Goshen by charm of the present building, she is as fully cognizant as she is of its inadequacy as a home for contemporary library service in a community of Goshen's size.

Ms. Kehoe has a daughter and a son, a Siberian Husky and a calico cat. She is an avid reader of mysteries, classical and contemporary fiction, and an avid listener of non-fiction (biography, travel and history). She lives in Warwick, but spends as much time as possible in Vermont, her adopted home.

Calendar of Events

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