Library rules in place to curb bad behavior
Swipe, scan, stamp. “Sign in!” The whole library seems alive as chatter fills the room from wall to wall.
Every morning, students file into the library for various reasons. Some go to check out books, some do homework, and some simply sit around chatting with friends. Regardless of their reasons for being there, the librarians have noticed a long string of poor library behavior among students.
Members of the library staff say that they are frustrated by bad habits such as not signing in, forgetting to push in chairs and sticking chewed gum under the tables.
To an extent, the librarians have accepted these behaviors as part of their daily routine. But students who enter the library are still expected to follow a certain set of guidelines, including signing in, keeping conversation at a minimal volume and cleaning up after themselves.
“Honestly, I think the rules are here for a reason,” senior Melody Dunlap said. “I think people should follow them.”
Some students like junior Randi West wish the rules were more relaxed.
“I feel like we don’t have to be so strict,” West said. “At least people actually go here.”
Librarian Chin Arritola and library assistant Celeste Brown hope to show students the importance of the library rules and the reasoning behind them. The sign-in system tracks everything that happens in the library, and it has the potential to help students if they get in trouble. If a student is accidentally marked absent, for example, one look at the library sign-in list is all it takes to correct the problem.
“The kids don’t realize the method to the madness,” Arritola said. “The records are important because they justify to the district why we should be able to keep this library.”
The school district uses the sign-in records to determine how often libraries are being used in the district by students and staff. It is necessary for the library to maintain good foot traffic records. This is why the librarians stress the importance of keeping good library behavior.
“It’s important to follow the rules,” Arritola said. “It’s not just for no reason, it’s for order. You wouldn’t realize the difference rules make. If we didn’t have rules, our library would be littered with food, and crawling with cockroaches.”
Although the library staff members accept that not everyone will follow rules in the library, they still believe that a little respect can go a long way, because the rules are there for the students’ benefit.
“I’m sure they realize this place is for them,” Arritola said. “It’s their place, but they need to follow the rules if they want to have the library as a place to hang out.”