Fulton County Library System Debuts New Website
The Fulton County Library System is getting a digital makeover. On Wednesday, October 21st the Library System debuted a redesigned website and library catalog, offering library patrons a more modern platform for their library experience. The new website will offer an updated look and feel, as well as mobile responsive design which will improve the user experience whether on a computer, tablet or phone.
Features of the new website include:
- a new catalog, allowing patrons a more positive experience when tracking holds in their accounts, creating lists as well as rating books and finding reading recommendations from other users or librarians
- a new events calendar, which will allow patrons to search events system-wide based on location, interests, ages and more
- improved search capabilities
- simple navigation
- streamlined pages for each library branch, highlighting features of the branch, hours of operation and more
- a more modern design and user experience
“This website redesign has been long overdue and something we have wanted to do for some time now. The challenges of remaining closed during the COVID-19 pandemic, also brought opportunities to enhance and improve our digital experience for our patrons. As we continue to rely on digital services and programs to engage with residents, the website is our front door to that experience. We are so pleased with the outcome of this new look and know our patrons will really enjoy the improved design, catalog, events calendar and access to book recommendations, reviews and more,” said Gayle Holloman, Executive Director of the Fulton County Library System.
The Fulton County Library is pleased to invite library patrons and all residents to explore the new site, register their library cards and start exploring today at www.fulcolibrary.org.
Fulton County Library System Launches PAPER for Online Learning
Earlier this year, Fulton County Library System launched a variety of new Digital Resources to enhance an already extensive Digital Library experience, amid COVID-19. Popular library digital resources launched earlier this year included Lynda.com, Kanopy, Creative Bug, among others. Today, FulcoLibrary launches Paper.co, a free, online tutoring service, for Fulton County residents and library card holders. Through Paper’s remote learning platform, students are provided unlimited 24/7 access to online tutoring in any subject from a fully vetted Paper educator, and essay review with annotated feedback within 24 hours. Through Socratic instruction methods, students are guided through concepts to find the answers on their own.
In addition to providing free academic support to Fulton County library card holders, Paper.co will also be available for CLASS PASS participants from Atlanta Public Schools, who currently use student identification credentials to access many of the library’s resources.
With many districts continuing to teach children with remote learning, the need for flexible and personalized online support for students has only increased. In partnering with Paper, the Fulton County Library System is helping close the divide between those who can afford private tutoring and those who cannot.
Teachers in Paper’s partner organizations have reported seeing an increase in students’ grades since using Paper, and many students have reported feeling more confident with their school work. To access Paper.co, simply visit www.fulcolibrary.org/digitallibrary or simply go to paper.co to register for this exciting new resource.
Fulton County Library System Expands Curbside Pickup Hours and Adds Six New Locations
The Fulton County Library System expanded hours for curbside pickup services in August, allowing patrons more time and flexibility to pick up and return library books and materials to their local library. In addition to the expanded hours, 6 additional locations will come online with curbside services. The libraries were closed previously for renovations and were completed during the closure due to COVID-19.
The additional locations include:
- Adamsville-Collier Heights Library, 3424 Martin Luther King Jr., Drive, SW Atlanta 30331
- Buckhead Library, 269 Buckhead Ave. NE, Atlanta 30305
- East Atlanta Library, 400 Flat Shoals Ave. SE, Atlanta 30316
- Northeast/Spruill Oaks Library, 9560 Spruill Road, Johns Creek 30022
- Northside Library, 3295 Northside Parkway NW, Atlanta 30327
- Ponce de Leon Library, 980 Ponce de Leon Avenue NE, Atlanta 30306
All County libraries will remain closed for typical in-branch library services, but items placed on hold by library patrons will be available for pickup from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m., Monday and Tuesday, and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday.
To pick up library materials on hold, residents are asked to:
- Bring their library or photo ID to the branch where their items are being held
- Follow signs to designated parking spaces for curbside service (or to designated tables for walk-up services)
- Call the number on signs to alert a staff member that they have arrived and provide their name
- Show the staff member photo ID or library card through closed window
- Open/unlock trunk or back seat door to allow library staff to place items in their vehicle
- Walk-up patrons will use social distancing to provide ID and receive materials in front of branches
To return library materials, residents are asked to:
- Bring their books or other materials to any library branch open for curbside services
- Place items in book drops located at every branch
- All items returned to the library will be placed in quarantine and will not be checked out to any library patron for a minimum of 24 hours
All items picked up will be checked out for a period of 14 days for new books/materials, 7 days for DVDs and 28 days for all other materials. Residents are asked not to donate books at this time.
In addition to curbside services, the Library System’s Ask a Librarian live assistance site will be available during the same hours as curbside services, Monday/Tuesday, 10 am – 7 pm, and Wednesday through Saturday, 10 am – 4 p.m. Virtual Programming will continue on the Library’s social media channels by following @fulcolibrary. For updates on curbside services, visit www.fulcolibrary.org/curbside.
Storytime – LIVE!
Join Fulton County Library staff for a special storytime, Monday- Friday at 11 a.m. on Facebook and listen to special stories with your little ones, while they are home from school, daycare or just in need of some mid-morning fun! Follow us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/fulcolibrary.
Please monitor our Facebook page for daily posts about library digital resources and how to use them. The library is featuring new resources every day along with instructions on how to use the digital library. Follow @fulcolibrary on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to keep up with all online library activities.
The Library has officially kicked off the Big Library Read (one week early) for readers ages 16 and up. Library patrons are encouraged to download Funny, You Don’t Look Autistic via OverDrive (or the Libby app) and read/listen to this title. Readers can then login to Beanstack at https://fultoncounty.beanstack.org/ to complete some activities, including writing a review of the book. The Big Library Read is known as the first global ebook club and is a great way for adults to engage with readers from around the world. More information about the Big Library Read is available here: https://biglibraryread.com/.
As always, the Library is ready to help residents through this challenging time in any way possible. If you have any questions not answered here, please reach out to our Ask A Librarian staff with your specific question at https://afpls.libanswers.com/.
All four Forsyth County Public Libraries expand service hours!
Beginning the week of July 27, all branches of Forsyth County Public Library will expand regular hours. Libraries will be open on Monday and Wednesday from 9:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m., Tuesday and Thursday from 1:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m., Friday and Saturday from 10:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., and Sunday from 1:30 to 5:30 p.m. Forsyth County Public Library branches had reopened to the public on June 15 following a two-month closure for the COVID-19 pandemic.
Wear a Mask & Practice Social Distancing
“We are pleased to be able to add more hours just in time for the start of a new school year as we expect students will want to access the library at a variety of times, particularly in the afternoons, evenings, and weekends,” says Library Director Anna Lyle.
The additional hours are intended to give students and other patrons more opportunities to browse for study or pleasure reading materials and check them out for use at home. All library patrons are encouraged to continue wearing masks in library buildings, practicing social distancing, and limiting visits to 30 minutes or less.
“Our staff will continue wearing masks and practicing social distancing. We’ll also continue monitoring and limiting the number of patrons admitted to the library,” adds Lyle. Placement of seating, tables, and computer areas continue to promote social distancing between patrons and discourage gathering. Study rooms, conference rooms, and meeting rooms remain closed.
Curbside Pickup Service
“Our Contact-Free Curbside Pickup services will continue for patrons at risk for severe illness and for those with personal circumstances that make coming inside the library difficult. Available appointments for pickups will vary by branch,” explains Lyle.
Some patrons using the Contact-Free Curbside Pickup service may qualify for Mailbox Books, a free service that delivers books and other materials via postal mail.
Patrons enrolled in Mailbox Books may select their own materials or have a librarian select materials based on their preferences. To learn more or to check eligibility requirements, please contact the FCPL Mailbox Books service at 678-513-9365.
Quarantine for Returned Books & Materials
Books and other materials returned to the library will continue to be quarantined for at least three days.
“Expert advice from the REALM (Reopening Archives, Libraries, and Museums) Project from OCLC, the Institute of Museum and Library Services, and Battelle, tells us that time is the most effective disinfectant for books and other library materials,” says Lyle.
Patrons should expect that items they return will stay on their account for several days while they are quarantined. Items held in quarantine are not considered overdue and fines will not accrue.
eLibrary Services Available at Home
eLibrary services are free to all patrons and can be accessed in the library or remotely by logging in with a Forsyth County Public Library card account.
All students and teachers enrolled in or employed by an educational institution in Forsyth County are eligible for a free library card. Eligibility requirements and an online application for a library card are posted on the library’s website.
“FCPL offers thousands of eBooks, eAudiobooks, and other online services such as research databases and free, one-on-one homework help from Tutor.com,” says Lyle.
Virtual Programs Continue
Patrons may continue to enjoy such online programs as Baby & Me, book talks for teens and adults, crafting events, book clubs, writing workshops, and author talks. Other popular programs may be presented in new formats. For example, Online Storytime will be presented live via GoToWebinar and as a pre-recorded program on YouTube beginning in August.
All details about the expanded hours, curbside services, and online programs and events are provided in the attached document. If it’s more convenient, you might also like to share our blog post on social media<https://fcplnews.blogspot.com/2020/07/forsyth-libraries-to-expand-service.html>.
For more information about Summer Reading Fun 2020, getting a library card, using online Library services, or to learn about Contact-Free Curbside Pickup, please visit www.forsythpl.org.