Spring/Summer 2020 COVID-19 Response

Added by Elizabeth Smith (11/10/2020 - 10:10)
Last updated by Jason Jensen (02/02/2022 - 13:43)
Documentation Source: 

Reopening Timeline

On June 29, 2020

On June 16-17, 2020

  • Paging Lists: System wide paging lists were restored. (Libraries may stop using the Local Holds List).
  • Notices: Hold pickup notices, courtesy notices, overdue notices, and bill notices were restored. Libraries do not need to contact patrons for holds pickup as those notices are running automatically. 
  • All paging lists and notices were turned off as of March 16, 2020. They have now been restored.

On June 5, 2020

  • Circulation: All collections restored to regular circulation rules. 
  • Due Dates: All holds and due date periods were returned to their pre-shutdown values. During the closure, due dates were extended for items with due dates => 03/13/2020. So if the items were due prior to 3/13, the due dates were not extended. Patrons may receive notices on those items. Items that checked out before 6/5/2020 had an absolute due date of 6/26/2020. Patrons who have had materials out before we closed down (3/16) may receive overdue or bill notices. Libraries may need to address some situations on a case-by-case basis, since we cannot cover every eventuality.
  • Patron Expiration Dates: All patron cards that would have expired during March, April, and May have been renewed to July 1, 2020. A note has been added in the patron record. Contact the help desk if your library wants to extend patron expiration dates again. 
  • Patron Purge: Due to the COVID-19 shutdown, we are operating under a compressed timeframe. Information regarding patrons to be purged has been distributed to members. We need your replies no later than August 31, 2020.  Please Contact Roy Arey with any questions.

Reopening Phases

To help member libraries resume public services when the individual library determines that they will reopen, PrairieCat is providing the following instructions. To see how other libraries are preparing phased reopening plans, see additional resources: https://support.prairiecat.info/documentation/65035

PrairieCat Reopening Guide (Updated 6/5/2020)

Phase 1: Some Libraries Open | No Delivery 

PrairieCat will need to make special system configurations for libraries that reopen during this phase. This phase is passed. 

Phase 2: Most PrairieCat Libraries Open | No RAILS Delivery

PrairieCat will need to make special system configurations for libraries that reopen during this phase. This phase is passed.

  • Reopening Guide: Instructions on how to provide service during this phase. Details on circulation, holds, materials handling, fines, etc. are included in the Reopening Guide. 
  • Producing Local Holds List: Instructions on producing a local holds list while system wide paging lists are off. 

Phase 3: Most PrairieCat Libraries Open | RAILS Delivery as of 6/29 (CURRENT PHASE)

  • Delivery: RAILS Delivery is operational, and ILL has resumed for libraries who have opted in (as of 8/3, all public libraries have done so). Libraries must opt in and contact the RAILS Delivery help desk railsdelivery@railslibraries.info to request delivery services. Read the full Delivery Plan for instructions on how to prepare for delivery. Materials may be delayed due to system disruption, quarantine periods, and delivery backlog. 

Schools and Academics:

  • Standard end of year procedure, school paging lists turned off and collections made non-holdable and non-circulating.
  • All holds for school libraries and school library patrons have been cancelled. If you need a list of cancelled holds for your library, please submit a help desk ticket at helpmenow@prairiecat.info
  • Reports are posted under April on the statistics page of the support site for current items checked out (log-in required): https://support.prairiecat.info/statistics
  • If schools can message students, we would advise that they instruct them to return their library materials to their public library (if possible), if they cannot return them to the school.
  • Please refer to the RAILS Covid-19 page for instructions on Delivery. 
  • When you are ready to reopen, please fill out the reopening form found here.  This will notify PrairieCat staff and we can performed the needed system changes.