Policies on library behavior

Information for Parents and Guardians Regarding After School Use of the Scarborough Public Library

Dear Families,

Students are visiting the Library after school in record numbers. We are pleased so many are choosing to come to the Library for a quiet place to read or to work on homework, but the number of students often exceeds the capacity of our Youth Services area. We appreciate the cooperation of students and families as we continue to work on strategies to accommodate this demand, while also ensuring access and safety for all our Library users. Please remember, a child under the age of 10 cannot be in the Library unattended.

We offer the following reminders and suggestions and encourage you to share this information with your child. 

  • The Library is not an afterschool care facility. Please be sure that your child has appropriate work to do, such as homework, research, or reading. We want to emphasize that our Youth Services team is here to assist your child in finding library resources in support of their studies and/or interests. We expect that students will be respectful of appropriate use of the Library, and that they have a plan for getting home when their work is finished.
  • The Library’s free wireless Internet. Our hope is that this service will assist students in their studies. Groups of students gathered around laptops are often disruptive and will be discouraged. Please be aware that the Library staff is not responsible for monitoring what your child may choose to access on his/her computer. Internet safety is a family matter and we encourage you to review your expectations with your student.
  • The comings and goings of students visiting the Library are not monitored. Please review your preferences with your child regarding leaving the Library grounds. Students must take any personal belongings with them should they leave the building.
  • Backpacks and laptop bags often spill into aisles and common areas, creating safety hazards for all our users – particularly those with mobility difficulties. Students will be asked to tuck their belongings under tables when possible, but we recommend that large bags and sports equipment not be brought to the Library.    
  • We expect that students will be respectful of appropriate use of the Library. We will ask a child to leave the Library should he/she exhibit inappropriate behavior. Keep in mind that if your child has been asked to leave the Library, that means they must leave Library grounds as well. In addition, loitering is not permitted on Library grounds.
  • Finally, we encourage parents and guardians picking up students to familiarize themselves with closing times as there is no staff coverage in the building after hours, and no protected area outside for students to wait on cold, snowy, or rainy days. Hours are posted on our website at www.scarboroughlibrary.org.

The Scarborough Public Library appreciates the many parents and guardians who encourage their children to use the Library in support of their studies and personal interests. We are committed to working closely with school administrators and other community partners to create a safe, nurturing environment for your child. We thank you in advance for your help and cooperation in making this possible. If you have any questions or comments, please contact Louise Capizzo, Youth Services Librarian, at 883-4723 option 3 or lcapizzo [at] scarboroughlibrary.org or Nancy Crowell, Library Director, at 883-4723 option 6 or ncrowell [at] scarboroughlibrary.org

Scarborough Public Library Rules Related to Library Behavior

We desire to maintain a quiet space where library patrons may read, study, and otherwise use the library without disturbance.

Therefore, no patron will engage in behaviors prohibited by the Scarborough Public Library Rules Related to Library Behavior which have been approved by the Library Board of Trustees.

The library staff will enforce these rules to help ensure that all individuals can use and enjoy the Library.

While in the Library or on Library property, no person shall:

  1. Consume alcoholic beverages, smoke, vape or eat anywhere in public areas. Beverages may be consumed from securely capped beverage containers—except that no beverages are allowed at any public access computer or catalog lookup. Food and drink are permitted in the meeting room during authorized functions.
  2. Be under the influence of alcohol or drugs, or engage in any substance abuse;
  3. Engage in disruptive communication on a cell phone or similar device;
  4. Take photographs of any individual(s) without the individual’s prior permission;
  5. Damage, deface or misuse Library materials or facilities;
  6. Improperly remove Library materials or equipment;
  7. Engage in loud or boisterous conduct, or physical intimacy;
  8. Enter or remain in the building outside of public service hours or without permission, or enter non-public areas;
  9. Interfere with other Library patrons or staff through poor personal hygiene;
  10. Sleep in the Library;
  11. Bring animals into the Library, except those required for personal assistance or which are part of Library programming;
  12. Engage in conduct that interferes with use or enjoyment of the Library by others;
  13. Engage in conduct that disrupts Library programs;
  14. Use any Library materials or facility for purposes other than those for which such materials or facility are intended;
  15. Engage in abusive language or abusive behavior toward other patrons or Library staff;
  16. Violate any state or local law or ordinance while in the Library or on Library grounds;
  17. Solicit for any reason except as permitted by the Board of Trustees.

Library policy does not prohibit quiet conversation between patrons and/or staff or conversations required to carry on library programs or business.

Amended: June 17, 2004
Amended: February 19, 2009
Amended: January 19, 2017

Tobacco Policy

In accordance with the provisions of the Workplace Smoking Act of 1985 and M.R.S.A.

1541–1545 enacted by PL 1993, Chapter 342 and effective January 1, 1994, Scarborough Public Library prohibits smoking and the use of  smokeless tobacco products in the Library and anywhere on Library property. There is no area of the Library or Library property designated as a tobacco use area.

This policy applies to all employees, library users, guests, and other visitors.

An employee who violates this policy may be subject to disciplinary action.


Adopted : 09/16/2010

Use of Cell Phones Policy

The Scarborough Public Library provides an environment conducive to study and welcoming to all users.

Therefore, the use of cell phones and similar wireless communication devices is not permitted within the Scarborough Public Library by the public or staff, except in designated areas:

  1. Lobby area near public telephone;
  2. Staff break area;
  3. Meeting Room (groups using the meeting room may set their own guidelines): and,
  4. Any area outside the building.

Inappropriate use of such devices is considered disruptive behavior. This policy will be enforced under the Library’s Rules Related to Library Behavior Guidelines

Adopted: June 17, 2004

Rules Related to Library Behavior revised: June 17, 2004; Amended 2/19/2009
Policy Statement Regarding Appropriate Library Behavior 10/1990