New Zealand News

By Merilyn Small

CINs in the South: New Zealand school librarians based in Christchurch address the problem of providing periodical articles within a reasonable time frame.

Two Current Information Networks (CINs) are presently operating through secondary school libraries in Christchurch. In the last Connections issue Rosa-Jane wrote of N .Z. students increasing demand for journal articles through access to Index New Zealand CD ROM (INNZ). The CINs have been set up as a response to this growing need for more timely delivery of this information to students, and to reduce the number of INNZ requests to the National Library's Document Supply Service in Wellington.

The first CIN was established between six local high schools as a pilot scheme in 1993. This model was used again when then CIN2 was discussed by a second group of library staff who met late last year over the requisite tea, coffee and biscuits. We agreed that we should share the resources of our serials collections, and provide a list of our individual holdings. From this list our union catalogue was produced. In a subsequent meeting (more T,C,B!) we negotiated which library would subscribe to particular magazines to ensure that the 'most used' titles were covered. With 'timely delivery' in mind we also agreed to fulfill requests within a 24 hour period, using our library or office fax facility.

Our CIN works like this: a student requests an article cited in INNZ. If the school does not hold the relevant journal, the CIN union catalogue is checked and a fax request is made. Result: the required article and a most impressed student!

The requesting school keeps a copy of each article to avoid future duplication and each library keeps a record of requests made and filled to comply with Copyright and to provide a statistical basis for our CIN annual evaluation. Of course we still need to use National Library's Document Supply service, especially for newspaper sources. Through this service the requested articles are posted to the school library and delivery time can be up to ten days. In comparison, the quick tum-around time of our local CINs is a big advantage, especially as students usually want their information immediately!

Our term holidays begin soon. In September, another very traditional opportunity for librarians to network will take place at Masterton with the annual NZLIA. School Library Network will be there!

Merilyn Small


Riccarton High School