I was able to chat with David Schuster, Library Technology Coordinator for Plano Independent Schools District (ISD) in Texas. Plano ISD has 68 schools, ranging from pre-school to high school.
David plans to cut over to Koha on January 1, 2009. He’s been working with LibLime and plans to sign a three-year contract with them to provide migration support and maintenance to their Koha installation. His libraries will be set up as independent branches. They will not share holds.
David and his team chose Koha because it provided the promise of continuous changes to the look and functionality of the ILS. It also has a web-based staff client, very easy to roll out new changes to all of his schools. Customization is very important to Plano ISD.
David thinks that he might sponsor some development work for the inventory control module that comes with Koha. Right now, the only thing the inventory control feature does is flag the item on the shelf. It does not provide detailed information regarding misshelved items or incorrect code information (wrong collection, etc.). He’d also like to see improvements made in spine label printing. Right now, Koha can only print spine labels in batches, not for an individual item.
Another possibility for sponsored work — David is considering working with LibLime somewhere down the line to produce an icon-driven kid’s catalog.
Other enhancements David would like to see with Koha:
- Annual circ history information for each item
- Batch creation of items
- Batch editing of items
- Off-line circulation module
- Item barcode lookup for editing purposes
- Reports are fabulous, but there needs to be a set of standard reports that can be easily shared among all libraries (maybe this exists now, but David hasn’t seen it yet)
David has been told that there is work being sponsored right now to provide the ability for Koha users to perform batch item deletes.
LibLime will be providing custom style sheets for his elementary, middle and high school libraries.
I will touch base again with David sometime after January 1st.