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Monthly News & Updates

February 2023 | Vol. 7 No.2

A pastel background filled with hearts and graphics of chocolate surround the Charles Schulz quote: "All you need is love. But a little chocolate now and then doesn't hurt."

Initiatives & Announcements

The Middletown Library Service Center will be closed on Monday, February 13 and Monday, February 20 in observance of Lincoln's birthday and President's Day.

The DLD Team offers a hearty congratulations and says a heartfelt farewell to our colleague, Maria Bernier. Maria will be the new library director at the UCONN Avery Point campus in Groton starting next month. We are excited for Maria’s new opportunity and wish her all the best – she will most certainly be missed here!


We are happy that Maria will continue to be part of the CT library community and look forward to working with her in her new capacity.

New Name for LBPH: The CT Library for Accessible Books

The Connecticut State Library is pleased to announce that the Connecticut Library for the Blind and Physically Handicapped (LBPH) has adopted a new name: The Connecticut Library for Accessible Books (CTLAB). The State Library selected the new name with the support and approval of the Advisory Committee for CTLAB.

A white e-reader with blue studio headphones resting on either side of it displays "CT Library for Accessible Books" in light yellow letters on its screen.

On October 1, 2019, CTLAB’s federal partner, the National Library Service for the Blind and Print Disabled (NLS), changed its name from the National Library Service for the Blind and Physically Handicapped to its present name. CTLAB’s name change is part of a wider movement to update names of regional libraries within the National Library Service for the Blind and Print Disabled’s (NLS) nationwide network of libraries. 

Though the library’s name has changed, its core services and resources remain the same. CTLAB remains a unit of the Connecticut State Library with a mission to serve people who are blind, individuals who have a visual disability, people who have a perceptual or reading disability, and persons unable to read print materials due to a physical disability.

Graphic of the All CT Reads 2023 Primary Titles with photos of authors and book covers. Authors/titles are: Rosena Fung, Living with Viola (Kids), Samira Ahmed, Hollow Fires (Teen), and Dawnie Walton, The Final Revival of Opal & Nev (Adult).

All CT Reads 2023 Virtual Author Launch

with Rosena Fung, Samira Ahmed, and Dawnie Walton

Watch the recording!


Share with your classroom, patrons, or book group!

Last month, the CT State Library Division of Library Development held an extra-special virtual launch with the authors of the 2023 All CT Reads primary selections – Rosena Fung, author of Living with Viola, our kids pick; Samira Ahmed, author of Hollow Fires, our teen pick; and Dawnie Walton, author of The Final Revival of Opal & Nev, our adult pick. Each author discussed their work and answered questions from our community.

Books for Borrowing! Book discussion sets of all twelve titles are available for reservations and borrowing by public, school, and academic libraries from the Middletown Library Service Center. Reserve All CT Reads Discussion Sets.

YouTube logo
Niche Academy logo

We have YouTube and Niche Academy!

Looking for self-paced library trainings? Did you miss an interesting DLD workshop or webinar? The CT State Library is here to help! The CT State Library Niche Academy is available to all CT library workers and contains self-paced trainings and webinars that can be viewed and completed at will.

Trainings can be found on:

  • Community Engagement
  • Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion
  • Programming
  • Management
  • Cataloging
  • And more!

The CT State Library, Division of Library Development YouTube page holds all DLD recorded webinars and presentations sorted by subject for any library worker to reference in their time of need.


Happy learning!

Digital Equity News     

E-Rate Form 471 Application Window Dates | Your CLFC Form 470 for Internet Service Number


The Funding Year (FY) 2023 FCC Form 471 application filing window opens Wednesday, January 18, 2023, at 12:00 noon EST and closes Tuesday, March 28, 2023, at 11:59 p.m. EST.

A computer monitor encased in a semi-transparent globe with a computer keyboard superimposed on the top against a blue background. Text reads: "Digital Equity" in white letter at the bottom.

If you need to file via Zoom screen sharing with Chris, she will start taking requests to schedule appointments beginning February 1, 2023. 


If you are filing for a discount on internet service from CEN and use the Connecticut Libraries Fiber Consortium Request for Proposals every year, the Form 470 application number that you enter for the FRN will be: 230004124. You can also search for this by the name “CLFC Internet RFP 2023.” There were three responses to the Request for Proposal.


If you are filing for your annual fiber maintenance costs, please remember that for this FRN, you use the Form 470 number associated with your original dark fiber build FRN and Form 471.


On or after February 1, 2023, please feel free to email [email protected] or call 860-704-2224 for assistance in filing. 

Professional Development & Continuing Education

Workshops & Programs

How to Use Your State Annual Report Data During Budget Season (and Year-Round)


Thursday, February 2

10:30-11:30 am | Register

Wednesday, February 22

2:00-3:00 pm | Register

A graphic of a computer monitor against a lime green background with colorful graphs on the screen.

Join Maria Bernier, State Data Coordinator, for an informative online demonstration of how to sift through the mountains of Connecticut public library data in order to tell your library's story and answer common data questions. Learn how to use pre-made Excel charts to illustrate your budget presentations and documents. Let the data work for you.

Recording & Slides: This program is being recorded and will be made available on the Data playlist on DLD's YouTube channel.

Who should come? Perfect for anyone and everyone who loves data! Including Library Directors/Administrators, Children’s and YA Staff, Library Board Members, fellow data nerds, and anyone who wants to understand their library's numbers in context.

Accesibility: This webinar will be captioned. If you require another access service to participate fully, please use the Accommodation Request Form at least 7 days prior to the event.

Related LibGuide: Statistics for Connecticut Public Libraries by Maria Bernier

Stand Out Every Time

You Talk

Friday, February 3

1:00-3:30 pm | Register

What happens when we have to make a presentation whether to our staff, the board or a room full of strangers?

We get nervous and our message gets lost.

A woman in a yellow blouse stands at a podium with her back to the viewer. She is speaking in front of a crowd with a laptop on the podium in front of her.

In this interactive Zoom workshop, learn the fundamentals of effective presentation skills. Find out how solid eye contact is an anchor, learn about posture and gestures and how to use your voice effectively, as well as tips on crowd control.

You'll also see how your physical presence affects your message, whether in a live presentation or on Zoom.

Don't let nervousness – which can’t be eliminated but can be controlled – diminish your ability to share your excellent ideas.

Introduction to Canva 

Tuesday, February 7

9:30 am-11:00 am | Register

Note: This workshop is open to library staff in Connecticut only.

Learn how to make logos, web images, and flyers using the online design site, Canva.

Canva logo in white against a blue circle background

In this hands-on workshop, participants will learn about the Canva environment and design elements. Participants will work on their own designs during the workshop and will finish the class with projects they can use at their library.

**Since this is a small group workshop, participants will need a computer with a camera and microphone so they can share thoughts and ask questions throughout the class.

This is a beginner class for those who have little to no prior Canva experience. Participants should sign up for a free Canva account before the workshop. 

GELS | ADA and Beyond: Making Programs Accessible for All

Wednesday, February 8

2:00-3:30 pm | Register

How accommodating are the design and content of your programs to persons with disabilities?

Growing Equitable Library Services (GELS) logo

Do you have plans for how to adapt a program when a patron with low vision attends?

How about someone on the autism spectrum or with limited dexterity?

Does your library have a procedure for accommodation requests?

Learn from our panel of experts as they discuss typical types of library programs and how to make them more accessible and welcoming for everyone.


  • Smita Worah, State Education Resource Center
  • Mary Silverberg, National Federation of the Blind of CT
  • Arlene Lugo, CT Tech Act
  • Maria Jacovino, American School for the Deaf

Recording & Slides: This program is being recorded and will be made available on the GELS YouTube Playlist. A link to the slides will be available in the YouTube video description.

Who should come? Perfect for anyone who works in, or is interested in, customer service, library programs, youth services, and grantwriting.

Accessibility: This webinar will be captioned. If you require another access service to participate fully, please use the Accommodation Request Form at least 7 days prior to the event.

Related LibGuide: GELS: Growing Equitable Library Services by Kymberlee Powe

Make the Most of Your Social Media

Thursday, February 9

10:00-11:00 am | Register

Is your library on Facebook or Pinterest or Instagram?

Do you post and wonder if you are getting the most out of your social media? 

Graphic containing the words "Social Media" along with known social media icons including Facebook "likes" and "loves" against a cheery, apple green background

Is your library not on social media – or not on all the ones you want to be on – and you need some guidance? Then this workshop is for you!

This workshop is presented by Libby Post, President / CEO of Communications Services, and a frequent CSL workshop facilitator. Post uses social media to enhance the multi-faceted campaigns of her clients.

eGO CT | Palace Collection Manager Training and Q&A Session

Thursday, February 9

11:00 am-12:00 pm | Register

Please join us for an overview of the eGO CT program and a Palace Collection Manager training along with a Q&A session.

eGO CT and The Palace Project logos against a white background

Learn about the staff side of Palace and how you can create lists and lanes to highlight your collection.

Courtney Dalessandro, Palace Project Implementation Coordinator, Jill Scarson, Lyrasis Partner Success Leader, and Brad Bullis from the Connecticut State Library will be presenting and be available to answer all of your questions about eGO CT and the Palace Project.

Introduction to Scratch Coding

Tuesday, February 14

9:30-11:00 am | Register

Note: This workshop is open to library staff in Connecticut only.

Are you intrigued by the thought of starting a library coding club for kids or teens but have absolutely no idea about coding?

The words "Scratch Coding" in different font faces against a computer data screen background in blue and yellow.

Do you feel STEM programs would enhance your Library’s offerings, but feel out of your depth and have often said, “I’m not a computer person”?

Then this class is for you.

This workshop will introduce participants to Scratch computer coding, and the only experience you need is how to use a mouse and the internet.

Participants will identify a few online resources suitable for youth coding, then work through basic Scratch projects to build confidence as a Coding Club leader. Discuss potential topics for your coding club and ways to host remote classes.

This hands-on class – specifically and only for true beginners – will help you develop a marketable skill and attract new patrons to your library. 

GELS | Building Capacity for Community-Led Libraries: Fundamentals of Community-Led Planning and Capacity Building

Wednesday, February 15

2:00-3:30 pm | Register

Session 1: Fundamentals of Community-Led Planning and Capacity Building

Growing Equitable Library Services (GELS) logo

We will learn what community-led planning is (and isn’t), why it matters, and how to assess and grow your own organization’s capacity. 

​​​​Building Capacity for Community-Led Libraries Series

Community-led planning helps increase equity, creativity, and engagement in library programs and services. However, many libraries struggle with building the mindset, culture, and structures to embrace it.

In this four-part interactive series, you will learn how to apply the fundamentals of community-led planning in your library.

Evidence-based strategies will cover three types of change, derived from Dr. Audrey Barbakoff’s original research: inspirational, transformational, and operational. We will discuss real-world scenarios to help you use the concepts in your work. Regardless of the size, type, or readiness of your library, you can build your capacity to equitably center community. 


Recording & Slides: This program is being recorded and will be made available along with the slides on the GELS YouTube Playlist and GELS LibGuide.

Who should come? Perfect for any library staff interested in community-led libraries including Library Directors/Administrators, Children’s and YA Staff, Library Board Members and Friends, Librarians, Library Technical Assistants.

Visit our calendar

CT Digital Library

The Palace Project logo
The eGO CT logo, a service of the CT State Library

One hundred titles from Biblioboard were added to the CSL ebook collection! These new titles are both perpetual ownership and simultaneous use, which aligns with our goal of creating a sustainable collection with purchases that have fair pricing and reasonable terms. Books include titles by independent authors, including five Connecticut authors found in the BookLife Elite collection.

We now have 1,312 titles with these terms and a complete list can be found on our LibGuide.

We are purchasing additional materials from Baker & Taylor and the Palace Marketplace. The Palace Bookshelf has been expanded, as well. The Palace Project app now contains over 21,000 items as well as your own local or consortia content.

Promotional graphic for booklife elite containing covers for Freydis: Daugters of Freya by Gunhield Haugnes, An Artifact of Death by J.J. Cagney, and False Start by Barbara Valentin.

DLD will continue to host quarterly requestIT

Office Hours in 2023.

Logo for requestIT CT, a program of the CT State Library

Representatives from Equinox, Bibliomation, and the Connecticut State Library will be available to answer questions and share information about the fulfILLment platform and about interlibrary loan in general.

Office hours will be held from 11:30 am-12:30 pm on:

February 22, 2023

May 24, 2023

August 23, 2023

November 29, 2023

Always feel free to submit questions to [email protected] ahead of time so we can prepare for you. 

New promotional materials from EBSCO that focus on our business resources are NOW AVAILABLE!

Logo for researchIT CT, a program of the CT State Library

EBSCO has created new flyers and bookmarks that you can access for free on our LibGuide to share with your patrons! Let your community know what's available for them in the researchIT CT suite of databases.

Learn more about the researchIT CT Program by contacting Brad Bullis at b[email protected].


New Titles: Books on CD Collection

The titles below are NOW AVAILABLE in the Middletown Library Service Center’s Books on CD Collection (and are also available in the Palace Project app)! Find these titles and many more in our catalog.

Book cover for How High We Go in the Dark by Sequoia Nagamatsu
Book cover for Moon Witch Spider King by Marlon James
Book cover for Olga Died Dreaming by Xochitl Gonzalez
Book cover for This Mournable Body by Tsitsi Dangarembga

Professional Development Titles

These are just some highlights! We've got lots more professional development titles in our collection browse more titles and search our catalog.

Book cover for Including Families of Children with Special Needs by Sandra Feinberg
Book cover for Creating Inclusive Library Environments by Michelle Kowalsky
Book cover for Making the Library Accessible for All by Jane Vincent

Find Us

Stay Connected! Join our Email Lists

Our many email discussion lists for the library community help you connect with your peers. Conntech has the greatest reach across the state, and both Goodnightmoon for children's services and Speak for YA services have lively discussions and professional interchange.

Scout the full list and subscription information.

Middletown Library Service Center

Open Hours: Monday-Friday | 8 am-4:30 pm 

MLSC staff, whether in the office or telecommuting, are responding to voicemail and e-mail during business hours of 8 am to 4:30 pm, Monday to Friday, except for state holidays.

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