About The Library

Unattended Children Policy

The Enoch Pratt Free Library is dedicated to providing a welcoming environment that encourages children to visit the Library, attend programs, and use the Library collection and computers.  Library staff is available to assist and support children in using the Library. 


Library staff is not responsible for children who are left unattended at the library premises.  According to Maryland Family Law Section 5-801, children under the age of 8 should be accompanied and supervised by a parent/guardian/caregiver who is at least 13 years old.  Library staff cannot provide child care, supervise unattended children, or assume responsibility for the safety of children. 


Parents/guardians/caregivers are responsible for the safety and behavior of their children.  At all times, parents/guardians/ caregivers are asked to remain in the immediate vicinity of their children using the library and maintain eye contact.


Like all Library users, children are expected to behave appropriately and abide by the Library’s Rules of Conduct.  Disruptive children who violate the Rules of Conduct may be asked to leave the Library premises.  Library staff reserves the right to contact parents or the Baltimore City Police Department if an unattended child under the age of 8 is being disruptive or is in distress.

running boy with backpack


Children and teens ages 6-16 must be in school on school days during school hours.  If they are at the library at this time, they must show written proof from school authorities excusing them from school on that day.  Library staff reserves the right to report instances of truancy to the Baltimore City Public Schools Office of Attendance and Truancy.


Closing Time

It is the responsibility of parents/guardians/caregivers to make sure their children have transportation to and from the library.  When an unattended child under the age of 8 is left at the library at closing time without transportation, Library staff will make every effort to contact the parents/guardians/caregivers of the child.  If no one can be found, Library staff will contact the Baltimore City Police Department.


Please check the scheduled open hours for each Enoch Pratt Free Library location and holiday closings for all locations.