Muenster Public Library

Patron Services

Patron Services

A.  Patron Services Statement

The mission of the Bettie M. Luke Muenster Public Library is to provide materials and services to assist patrons of all ages in obtaining information meeting their educational, professional and recreational needs. In order to fulfill these objectives, the staff of the library embraces the following philosophy:

The staff of the Bettie M. Luke Muenster Public Library cares about our customers and believes in providing the highest standard of service;

We seek innovative approaches to serve our patrons, whether within the resources of the library or beyond;

We believe in meeting our patrons’ information needs by providing guidance, assistance and accurate, complete, up-to-date information, with each research request treated with confidentiality;

We believe that all patrons have the right to equal treatment regardless of race, color, religion, or national origin;

We believe that patrons are entitled to excellent service from a staff that is knowledgeable and motivated to provide patron satisfaction;

We believe in the importance of knowing and understanding our patrons and responding to their ideas and concerns

We value teamwork and recognize that all staff is important to quality service;

We strive to make decisions with input from those most likely to be affected;

We encourage differing points of view, creativity and risk-taking;

We believe staff is special and that one person can make a difference.

B.    Xeroxing, Printing, or Scanning of Documents

 Under the Copyright Act, the Bettie M. Luke Muenster Public Library provides     copy, printing, and scanning service to its patrons. The library is committed to     complying with the copyright law of the United States (Title 17, United States     Code) and other federal legislature related to the duplication, retention and use of     copyrighted material.

The following notice of copyright will be prominently displayed on the library’s     copier and computers:

  “Library patrons copying any material on library machines are solely and fully     responsible for using the materials in compliance with copyright law. The material     must become the property of the patron, and the library must have no notice that     the material will be used for anything but “private study, scholarship, or     research.”

Materials may not be copied in large quantities nor should it substitute for     subscription to or purchase of materials.

Under certain conditions specified in the law, libraries and archives are authorized to furnish a photocopy or other reproduction.  One of these specific conditions is that the photocopy or reproduction is not to be “used for any     purpose other than private study, scholarship, or research.”  Library staff will refuse to duplicate any materials if doing so would violate copyright law. If a user makes a request for, and later uses, a photocopy or reproduction for purposes in excess of “fair use”, that user may be liable for copyright infringement.

C.    Proctoring Exams

 As a service to library patrons, library staff may proctor exams.

The public should understand that the library receives no compensation from either the exam taker or the sponsoring organization for providing this free  service.  The following guidelines will be observed:

    Any librarian may administer the exam.

    Exams not taken by the expiration date will be returned, if postage is provided, or shredded.

    Participating institutions and students must provide the following:


•    Name of institution

•    Name of the student

•    Instructions for proctor in administering the exam

•    Expiration date

•    Return envelope with postage


•    Materials for completing the exam

•    Picture I.D.

•    Return envelope and postage if this is not provided by the institution

D.  Violations of Patrons Services Policies

    The library may exclude from use or revoke privileges for anyone known to have violated any rule of these policies.

E.      Patrons communications

    1.    Patrons are encouraged to make suggestions for improvement.

    2.    The Director will review and evaluate suggestions and complaints and will  respond in a timely manner.

    3.    If the patron is dissatisfied with the Director’s reply, the patron may  communicate directly with the The Friends of the Muenster Public Library Board Members.  

F.      Responsibility and Authority

The library will operate within the framework of policies and principles adopted by The Friends of the Muenster Public Library Board Members.  Further, the library is authorized to develop such rules and procedures as may be necessary to carry out these responsibilities.


A.    Programs in the Library

As part of its mission to provide for the educational, informational, and recreational needs of its patrons, the Bettie M. Luke Muenster Public Library offers programs planned and sponsored throughout the year.  These programs, which are presented for adults, young adults, and children, may include story times, lectures, workshops, discussion groups, performances, readings, puppet shows, demonstrations, and panel discussions. There is no charge for admission to any program solely sponsored by the library.

1.    Performers/presenters policy:  Performers/presenters are invited to participate in programs that are sponsored by the library.  All performers/presenters must abide by the following policy:

a.    Presenters affiliated with a business and/or product are not permitted to promote specific business and/or product as part of the information session.  Exempt from this requirement are authors or performers who speak about their creations and are permitted to sell their books or creations as part of a library fund-raising effort.

b.    The names, addresses, and phone numbers of program participants may not be solicited in any manner.

c.    Publicity of library-sponsored programs is the responsibility of the library.  Guest speakers will not initiate any publicity for programs without prior approval of the Director.

d.    The library may mention the affiliation of the presenter in promotional materials.  However, this does not constitute endorsement by the library.

e.    Performance content must be appropriate for a library setting and for the audience age.

f.    Performers must have prior experience performing in a library.

g.    Performers will not include in a program material that advocates any personal beliefs or doctrines.

2.    Public performance license

As defined under current copyright laws, a public library building or a meeting room that is part of a public library building is considered a public venue.  To be legally displayed, media (VHS or DVD) used for programming in such a venue must have either been purchased with public performance rights or be covered by a public performance site license. It is a violation of copyright law to display “Home Use Only” media or programs that have been taped from broadcast television. It is also a violation to knowingly allow a patron or community group to display such media while using the public library meeting room.  It is also illegal for a library or community group using the library meeting room to charge admission to attend any program where public performance licensed media is being used.  In the case of limited public performance site licenses, the companies that sell such licenses will usually allow libraries to hold one fund raising event each year to recoup license costs, subject to the terms of the license contract.

B.    Co-sponsored Programs in the library

In order to further the mission of the Bettie M. Luke Muenster Public Library, the library will also co-sponsor activities with various groups within the community.  Such groups include local, state and federal government agencies; educational institutions; non-profit organizations; Friends of the Library; other library organizations or associations; and community organizations and clubs. There will be no charge for admission to any program co-sponsored by the library, except in the case of fund raising activities by the Friends of the Library.

C.    Tours of the library

Bettie M. Luke Muenster Public Library welcomes tour groups of all ages, preschool through adult.  Library tours are available for groups of five or more, not to exceed twenty-five participants.

The following information will be required from groups at the time the reservation is made:

•    Date of visit

•    Time of visit

•    School or group name

•    Phone number

•    Leader’s name

•    Age or grade

•    Number in group

•    Type of program

Preschool and early elementary children receive a tour with an emphasis on library etiquette and book care followed by a story.

Elementary age students receive a tour that highlights the children’s area emphasizing fiction and non-fiction collections.

Middle school students receive a minute reference tour that details resources available in the adult and juvenile reference areas. Included in this tour is basic instruction on the online catalog and online searching.

Adult, high school, and adult tours are available for a special collection or emphasis.


Leaders should be aware of proper library behavior and supervise children accordingly.  Recommended ratio of adult to child is one adult to every five children.

Brief visits are recommended for younger patrons. The length of the tour may be shortened or lengthened depending upon the attentiveness of the participants and the number of questions

Library tours must be scheduled with the Library Director.

The entire collection is open to all patrons. A patron’s age cannot be used to deny or abridge library use.  Library staff is not responsible for an individual’s selection of material. Parents or legal guardians have the right and responsibility to restrict access to library resources for their children only. They should inform their children of their expectations and visit the library with them if they are concerned about choices. See Appendix - Free Access to Libraries for Minors.   

D.    Special Services

Bettie M. Luke Muenster Public Library is committed to providing a full range of library and information services to all persons with special needs living in Cooke County and Montague County. Residents with special needs should be able to conveniently identify and obtain for their use library materials which will meet their needs in a format they can use.

•    Talking books-This collection provides recreational reading for people who have physical or visual disability that limits their use of standard printed materials.  Individuals using these books are required to have their disability confirmed by a qualified professional because of the copyright restrictions on the material.

•    In addition, the Talking Book Program established by the Texas State Library provides free library services to patrons who are unable to read standard print material due to visual, physical, or reading disabilities whether permanent or temporary.  Books and magazines, and the special equipment required to listen to recorded materials, are available. Library staff will assist patrons in establishing these services.

•    Large print books-The library maintains a large collection of current fiction and non-fiction materials in large print format that may be used by any library patron.

•    Staff will assist patrons in retrieving materials from top or bottom shelves, locating accessible restrooms, and other needed items in the building.


A.  Reference Services

Questions are addressed in confidence and with impartiality. No distinctions are made regarding the purpose of the inquiry or the intended use of the information. Patrons are provided with the information requested and the source.

Responses requiring reading and evaluating sources will be provided but the patron is expected to read and synthesize materials; follow-up attention will be provided if more information is needed. Reference staff will do their best to provide answers to questions using all resources available to     the library.  Librarians will provide instruction to patrons on how to find and use resources which contain the information they seek.

Circulation of Reference Materials

As a general rule, reference materials do not circulate.  Exceptions are made depending on the item in question and the nature of the request.  Reference materials may be checked out for overnight loan only. The patron must have a valid Bettie M. Luke Muenster Public Library, second form of identification, and complete a reference material check out form. Items must be returned directly to the reference desk.

Liability-The Bettie M. Luke Muenster Public Library is not liable for any damage caused by the use of the information used in or provided by the library. The library is not responsible for the accuracy of the information contained in the sources in the collection or of the information provided from other sources.

B. Recording Statistics

All public service departments gather and analyze statistics on the number and nature of questions answered. These statistics are maintained continuously to better evaluate reference service and as part of the annual report submitted to the Texas State Library. Statistical information on library tours, programs, online searches, interlibrary loan requests, and other services is also maintained.

       C. TexShare Databases

The Bettie M. Luke Muenster Public Library provides access to the TexShare Databases which are commercial databases subscriptions that are paid for by the Texas State Library and Archives Commission for use by registered patrons of Texas public libraries, Texas State governmental agency libraries, Texas academic libraries and libraries of clinical medicine.

TexShare provides databases which allow patrons to find full-text articles in encyclopedias, almanacs, journals, newspapers, and other resources on a wide variety of subjects.

In order to access the databases, patrons must be a registered card holder from a participating TexShare member library or qualify for services at a library established by an official Texas governmental agency. Patrons may access the databases in the library or from their home or office. Reference staff will provide the information and passwords necessary to access the databases.