Georgia Library Learning Online

Georgia Library Learning Online


(Georgia Library Learning Online)

Dear GISA Member School,

Attached is the Commitment/Enrollment form forthe GALILEO consortia of databases for the upcoming school year. GALILEO is a wonderful resource if one understands how GALILEO works. It can be very frustrating if one doesn’t! Allow me to provide some background, and walk you through an introduction.

GALILEO is a portal of databases (about 235 at last count) provided to all Georgia citizens via access points. The access points are all libraries that serve the population of Georgia: public libraries, university libraries, public and private K-12 libraries. Each entity pays for GALILEO through its specific fiduciary group. We currently have 29 schools participating in the private K-12 group make up the GISA/GALILEO group, representing over 13,155 GISA students. A school must be a GISA member in good standing in order to be a GISA/GALILEO participant. One may find out more about being a GISA member by contacting Robin Aylor at .

Participating in GALILEO is similar to building the old “one room school-house”; everyone brings what they have available, be it labor or supplies, and the sum ends up larger than the individual parts. All of us, joining together allow us to gain access to databases at a significantly reduced cost. It is a commitment, because while we have a general idea what the cost will be each year, we do not have the firm amount at the time of commitment. For the 2013-14 year we anticipate cost to be about $9.80 / student / year, but it may come in slightly higher or slightly lower. This estimate represents a 4% increase. The vendors have worked diligently with us to keep pricing stable during the recession. Now that the economy is starting to recover, the vendors will also need to make necessary hardware replacements that have been postponed during the last five years.

The BIG QUESTION always asked is “Why does my school have to pay for GALILEO? Why can’t we just use the public library password?” Allow me to answer as best I can. All groups, public and private, are paying for GALILEO access. Sometimes it appears as if it is "free", because at institutions that are taxpayer supported (such as the public library or thepublic school) the end user does not pay for it individually. Part of the state public library budget is GALILEO, with an allocation per patron at each public library. The same is true at the University System of Georgia and the Georgia State Board of Education - it is paid by the Board of Regents and GA BOE based on the number of students enrolled in each university or district. If you want to access GALILEO via the public library or the University System of Georgia, your tax dollars are being spent in Atlanta to allow you to do so. Some of the access points are tax-payer supported facilities, and some are not. All access points are libraries. Originally it was only public entities that were access points, but it soon became apparent that did not service all the needs; we are all citizens of the state of Georgia, and GALILEO is for all citizens. That is why the AMPALS (Atlanta Metro Private Academic Library System) and GPALS (Georgia Private Academic Library System) are also part of the consortia. They each have a fiduciary body, just like we have GISA, that bills each institution and forwards the payment to GALILEO, the same as the PLS (Public Library System) and the BOR and BOE.

Your school could actually choose to have students access via the public library. However, to be sure that the school is acting in a morally and ethically correct manner per the GALILEO contracts this would involve making sure each student had a public library card, and that they knew the password (and what it changed to four times per year). Teachers would not be able topass out the password, because by contract with the various vendors (EBSCO, ProQuest, Gale, etc.) only employees at access points may do that. Passwords also would not be able to be posted in classrooms, libraries, sent home in Friday folders, or put on the password protected portion of the website. Access would have to be by individual log-in from each student, instead of auto-populating to the IP address on campus. The deep discounts GALILEO receives are based on a certain volume of usage, and patronage at the institutions is used to determine the usage. If students from a school are using the public library password, but never darken the door of that library, then the patron statics are terribly skewed, which will eventually cause us to lose the ability to negotiate for the deep discounts. An oft-forgotten benefit of not using the public password is your students do not have to navigate through the databases not intended for k-12 users (i.e. genealogy or auto-mechanics!!).

The best way to become familiar with GALILEO is to see what it has to offer. To access GALILEO Online go to: The March Guest Password for the K-12 site is printed. The April Password will be available soon, so please contact us if you need access in April. Passwords are case sensitive, so do not capitalize. Feel free to go on the site and play around. My recommendation is to not use the initial search box first (it does a meta search, and can be a little confusing initially). Go to the browse by subject or browse by type tabs, look and see, do some searches that way, go to the databases A-Z tab and click on all databases. Just explore what is in there. Encyclopedia Britannica, SIRS Discoverer and Researcher, Literary Reference Center, Kids Infobits, and Novelist are all databases worth exploring. There is truly material available for every classroom from kindergarten through 12 grade, as well as professional development. At less than $10 per student, it is easily one of the best investments Augusta Prep makes - especially since our students have access to this data no matter where in the world they happen to be (if they have an internet connection!).

While this is just a very brief introduction to the benefits of GALILEO, we hope it will be enough to cause you to want to dig a little further. As I tell the students, get “click happy!”

If you have questions, do not hesitate to contact either Robin Aylor or myself, Kirsten Pylant, at . I look forward to hearing from you!

Kirsten Pylant – GISA Liaison for GALILEO

Head Librarian

Augusta Preparatory Day School

706-863-6858 ext. 220


GALILEO is Georgia's Virtual Library:
a Web site where Georgians and others can find magazine articles, books,
encyclopedias, historical documents, and more.

Through GALILEO, Georgia citizens have access to authoritative, subscription-only
informationthat isn't available through free search engines or Web directories.


Our school commits to participate in the


For the 2013 - 2014 school year

Our school requests and commits to be included in the GISA GALILEO CONSORTIUM and we understand that our school will be invoiced the one-time licensing fee of $350 (if this is our first year participating) plus an annual per-student cost (to be determined by the total number of students represented in GISA and calculated by the Board of Regents each year). We also understand that the per-student calculation will use our school’s total enrollment as already reported to the GISA Office as of January 15,2013.










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