The Payson Public Library is allowing check out of up to 10 books per student until the 30 item per library card limit is reached.To request books for students please call the library at 928-474-9260.

The Payson Public Library, 328 N. McLane Road, is limiting its curbside service to students in need of reference or reading materials because of Gov. Doug Ducey’s stay-at-home order.

They put the limitation into place following the governor’s executive order to “Stay at Home, Stay Healthy, Stay Connected.”

The library had created an earlier interim curbside pickup program for books and DVDs under social distancing guidelines, but that had its issues.

People did not practice wearing protective gear or keeping a safe distance when picking up orders, explained David Grasse, a librarian.

Once Ducey made his order, staff shut down pickups, but that left one group out in the cold. “I argued there were many parents in Payson with kids at home who they are supposed to be schooling, but they do not have the resources to do so,” said Grasse. “It seems to me it is our responsibility as librarians to provide them with what they need to continue their education in this crisis.”

In a recent nationwide study, 22% of families reported they do not have internet in the home. In Grasse’s experience, “many families here are near-indigent” and don’t have books, either.

Emily Linkey took the idea of letting students continue to pick up books curbside “to the town council and they agreed to let us continue this part of the program,” said Grasse.

The library offers its collection to support families and local schools by supplying “products needed to conduct distance learning” to the community. To use the service, parents or students must have a library card in good standing.

The library is allowing check out of up to 10 books per student until they reach the 30 item per library card limit. To request books for students, call the library at 928-474-9260.

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