Library again earns top national rating
For the ninth consecutive year, the Cleveland Heights-University Heights Public Library System has received the highest possible rating in Library Journal’s Index of Public Library Service. The five-star rating is given to the top U.S. libraries each year.
Heights Libraries has earned five stars in nine out of the ten years that Library Journal—a national trade journal that reports news about the library world, emphasizing public libraries—has published its ratings.
Libraries are categorized by yearly expenditure and rated on five criteria: circulation, visits, program attendance, Internet terminal use (public computers), and eCirc (eMedia, such as eBooks). Heights Libraries circulation came in at 29.3 per capita, meaning that roughly 29 items were circulated for every resident in the Cleveland Heights-University Heights service area. Visits per capita averaged 17, program attendance averaged 1.2, and public computer use was 4.8.
“This shows what we’ve always known: people in our community are using the library more than ever,” said Heights Libraries Director Nancy Levin. “For many customers we’re that ‘third place,’ the place besides work and home where they like to be. We are always busy, and I don’t see that trend reversing anytime soon.
“On any given day, at any branch, you’ll find people with a wide variety of needs being satisfied: Internet access to apply for jobs or benefits, books and early literacy information for their little ones, a free computer class to help them keep their job skills fresh, or an interesting program that gives them something to think about.”
Three other Cuyahoga County libraries also received five-star awards: Cleveland Public Library, Cuyahoga County Library, and Westlake’s Porter Public Library. Ohio libraries did well in general, compared to the rest of the nation: Ohio was second only to New York State in the number of libraries that received star ratings, 25 vs. 31, respectively.
The entire report on America’s star libraries can be found on Library Journal’s website, lj.libraryjournal.com.
Sheryl Banks is the communications manager for the Cleveland Heights-University Heights Public Library System.