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The library is seeking community feedback to help guide future improvements. Courtesy photo
The library is seeking community feedback to help guide future improvements. Courtesy photo
Cities Community Community Escondido News

Escondido library seeks community input for strategic plan update

ESCONDIDO — The Escondido Public Library is seeking input from residents and the community to help plan the library’s future. Survey results will guide the development of the library’s 2022-2026 Strategic Plan.

The Escondido library updates its strategic plan every five years, and it will seek input from residents through Nov. 29. Feedback from the community indicates future improvements and patron needs that the library may consider.

According to the library, “creating a strategic plan for the library with the participation of community members helps define the library’s core direction, establish realistic goals and objectives, communicate these goals and objectives to the public and officials, reallocate resources to the highest service priorities and create measurement tools to establish progress and successes.”

Library Director Dara Bradds said that in previous years, the library has received feedback about less shelving on the first floor, more space for meeting rooms and study areas, increasing the library’s e-book and audiobook collections and more.

Most recently, the library eliminated overdue fines and late fees after receiving feedback about creating a more equitable library experience for low-income patrons.

“The library belongs to the community, so it’s their resource, and it doesn’t make sense for us to have a resource for the community if we’re not providing the services and the programs and the materials that they want,” Bradds said. “It’s just about making sure we’re serving the community we belong to.”

The library has created a committee made up of Escondido residents and city employees and other volunteers that will work on the strategic plan update from start to finish.

After the public outreach phase of the process, the library will begin conducting focus groups to figure out what feedback to implement and how. These focus groups will be made up of a variety of residents, from students to business owners, to city government employees and more.

Following the focus groups, the Escondido Public Library will then create an implementation schedule to make those goals a reality for their patrons.

The updated plan is expected to be completed by July 2022.

The Escondido library has been serving the community since 1894 and has been a public library since 1898. The library completed its first-ever strategic plan in 2018.

“It is crucial for us and for the community, and it really helps us get feedback from people who want to see the library become the best it can be,” Bradds said. “We want to make sure we’re on track and providing the right services and programs for our patrons.”

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