The New Canaan Library’s Children’s Room welcomes children of all ages, parents, caregivers
and teachers. The Children’s Room offers a variety of print and audio visual materials to borrow
from babies to children in grade six and their parents, caregivers and teachers. Enriching
programs are held throughout the year to encourage a love of books, reading and to inspire an
interest in the cultural and natural world. The Children’s Librarians are available to help with
finding informational materials for homework assignments or assist with reading advisory.

 

Program Policies

 

The Children’s Room offers a variety of programs including storytimes, crafts, music programs,
book discussion series, puppet shows, magic shows, science programs and educational games for
children throughout the year.

 

The schedule for storytimes and programs is available in the Children’s Room and is posted on the Children’s website. Events are also promoted in the New Canaan Advertiser, the New Canaan News~Review, and in elementary school newsletters.


Registration for Storytimes:

• New Canaan residents are given first preference at storytime registration. Out-of-towners
are placed on a waiting list and they will be included in a program session if there are
spaces available.


• Children must be the appropriate age for a storytime program by the following dates:


Fall, September 15
Winter, January 15
Spring, March 15
Summer, June 15


• Storytime sessions for ages 3 to 12 are held each season for seven consecutive weeks.
Call-in registrations will be taken after 11 AM the morning of registration.


• Storytime sessions for two-year-olds are held in the fall, winter and spring for seven
consecutive weeks. At this registration or by the first session, proof of age is required.


• The Library requires parents to stay in the Children’s Room or Library during the
storytime programs.


• If New Canaan Schools are cancelled because of bad weather, the storytime programs are
cancelled for that day, also.


• If New Canaan Schools are delayed, storytimes will be held as scheduled.


Computer Policies

 

Game Computers:


• The Children’s Room has four designated Game Computers with educational and
recreational software. Each child is allowed a half hour of computer game time.


Internet Computers:


• The Children’s Room has four designated Internet computers. These computers have
filtering software installed. The Library encourages children to use these computers for
research. The computers also have Microsoft Word, Excel, and PowerPoint.


• Signup is held at the Children’s Information Desk on a first-come-first-serve basis. Each
child gets a half hour search time. Children are given preference for use on the Internet
Computers.


• Children needing to do research on the Internet computers will get preference over a child
wanting to play games on the Internet.


• Software installed on the four designated Internet computers prevents visits to chat
rooms.


Behavior Policies

 

The Library has a responsibility to provide an environment that is safe and comfortable
for every patron who is appropriately using its services and facilities.

• Appropriate behavior (respect for Library patrons, property and Staff) is expected by
children in the Library. Disruptive children will receive one warning from the Children’s
Librarian. If in the librarian’s judgment, the child continues to be disruptive or act
inappropriately, then the child’s parents will be notified and the child will be asked to
leave. If necessary, police assistance will be requested.


Unsupervised Child Policies


1. As specified in Connecticut General Statute 53-21a children under the age of twelve
may not be left unsupervised in the Children’s Room or the Library. A copy of the law is
posted in the Children’s Room. (See Appendix for full text of the law.)


2. Children under the age of 12 who are left unattended or appear to be in the Library
without adult supervision are a cause for concern to the Library. Issues of safety, liability,
and responsibility motivate the Library to address this potentially serious problem. It is
the policy of the Board of Trustees to require that parents or caregivers not leave children
under the age of 12 unattended in the Library.


3. The following procedure will be used if it is determined that a child under the age of 12 is
lost or left unattended.


a. A Staff person will notify the Children’s Librarian, Administration and/or the Librarian-In-Charge that we have
an unattended child in the building.


b. The Children’s Librarian, Administration and/or Librarian-In-Charge will attempt to locate the child’s parents or
caregiver in the building.


c. Unsuccessful attempts to locate parents will result in notifying the police (594-
3500). Upon arriving at the Library, the police officer may bring the unattended
child to New Canaan Police Headquarters at 174 South Avenue.


d. Under no circumstances shall a staff member take the child out of the building.


e. The Library is not responsible for children outside the Library building who await
transportation or who are socializing.


 Providing a Secure Environment for Children


1. The Children’s Room is dedicated to resources and services for Children (birth
through 13 years of age). Parents and caretakers are invited to accompany their children to the
Children’s Room to participate actively in reading, programs and the selection and use of library
materials. The use of the facility and resources are for Youth (children plus teens through 17
years of age). For the safety of all children, Adults (18 and over) who are not accompanied by
children, are to use the Children’s Library only for the purpose of retrieving materials for check
out or to make arrangement to retrieve materials for use in other areas of the library.

Approved by the Board of Trustees, January 11, 2005


APPENDIX


CRIMES-LEAVING CHILD UNSUPERVISED IN PLACE OF PUBLIC ACCOMMODATION OR MOTOR VEHICLE
Connecticut General Statute 53-21a


AN ACT CONCERNING THE PENALTY FOR LEAVING A CHILD UNSUPERVISED IN A
PLACE OF PUBLIC ACCOMMODATION OR A MOTOR VEHICLE.


Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Assembly convened:
(NEW) (a) Any parent, guardian or person having custody or control, or providing supervision,
of any child under the age of twelve years who knowingly leaves such child unsupervised in a
place of public accommodation or a motor vehicle for a period of time that presents a substantial
risk to the child’s health or safety, shall be guilty of a class A misdemeanor.
(b) Any parent, guardian or person having custody or control, or providing supervision, of
any child under the age of twelve who knowingly leaves such child unsupervised in a
place of public accommodation, which holds a permit issued under chapter 545¹of the general
statutes for the sale of alcoholic liquor for consumption on the premises, for a period of time that
presents a substantial risk to the child’s health or safety, shall be guilty of a class D felony.
(c) Any parent, guardian or person having custody or control, or providing supervision, of
any child under the age of twelve years who knowingly leaves such child unsupervised in a
place of public accommodation or a motor vehicle between the hours of eight o’clock p.m. and
six o’clock a.m. for a period of time that presents a substantial risk to the child’s health or safety,
shall be guilty of a class C Felony.
¹C.G.S.A. 30-1 et seq.
Approved July 8, 1997