Washington Post – “The gay penguins that ruffled feathers in Loudoun County school libraries and became the darlings of gay rights advocates and intellectual freedom fighters everywhere have taken to the stage. A play that premiered in Fairfax this summer at the Hub Theatre is based on a controversial children’s book about Roy and Silo, the real-life male penguins who hatched and raised a chick together at the Central Park Zoo. The play chronicles their family life, their rise to stardom and, as one character describes it, “the bird-brained behavior they caused.”
News Leader (Missouri) – “Calling the removal of two books “educationally unsound and constitutionally suspect,” officials from nine national groups are urging the Republic school board to reverse its decision. An Aug. 18 letter to Superintendent Vern Minor — signed by top officials from the organizations — states that the “decision to remove the two books cannot be justified.” The seven current board members were copied on the letter.”
Washington Post – “Here’s a relatively new one in the annals of book challenges: A Virginia school district has removed from the required sixth grade reading list at one middle school a Sherlock Holmes book because a Mormon parent complained about the way it portrayed Mormons. Josh Davis, chief operating officer for the Albemarle County Public Schools said the school board decided a few days ago to honor the request of a group of parents, “one in particular of the Mormon faith,” who complained earlier in the year.
CT Post – “Many school districts in Fairfield County have strict limits on which Web pages can be viewed by students during school hours, effectively outlawing the use of social media sites such as Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. New Canaan High School’s Library Department Chair Michelle Luhtala takes issue with these restrictions, which she likens to the practice of banning books in school libraries. In an effort to raise awareness around the importance of freedom of information for students, Luhtala plans to launch Banned Sites Day on Sept. 28, piggybacking off the American Library Association’s annual Banned Books Week the last week in September.”
ABC15 – “Judging from its cover, Hilary Lockhart thought her daughter’s new book with a teenage girl on the front was harmless. Then she read it.
“Shocked,” was how she described her reaction.
Now, “Lovingly Alice” has been pulled from the shelves at Lockhart’s daughter’s school in Phoenix until the district can decide appropriate action for the next school year.”
AP – “A state in western India banned Pulitzer-Prize winner Joseph Lelyveld’s new book about Mahatma Gandhi on Wednesday after reviews saying it hints that the father of India’s independence had a homosexual relationship. The author says his work is being misinterpreted. More bans have been proposed in India, where homosexuality was illegal until 2009 and still carries social stigma.”
Crossville Chronicle – “A motion to remove the novel The Catcher in the Rye from the school system failed to pass the Cumberland County Board of Education after the motion’s support was removed.
Jim Blalock, 8th District representative, said, “We have a book that is offensive that may or may not be used in our school system named ‘The Catcher in the Rye.’ I would like to have that book removed from the Cumberland County School System and it not be used.”
ABC Action News – “After weeks of a review process, the Hillsborough County Public Library System has ruled that a controversial kids book will stay on public library shelves.
The book is called My Mom’s Having a Baby by an author named Dori Butler based in Iowa. The book was published in 2005. As the story line goes, a little girl named Elizabeth is curious about how her mother became pregnant and childbirth. Throughout the book’s 30 pages, little Elizabeth learns about these topics in great detail.” (via)
Fairbanks panel votes to keep ‘Betrayed’ in high school libraries Read more: Fairbanks Daily News-Miner – Fairbanks panel votes to keep Betrayed in high school libraries
Fairbanks Daily News – “A school district committee has recommended that high school libraries continue to offer the book “Betrayed.” The book has been under evaluation by the committee and the Fairbanks North Star Borough School District for the past few months. “Betrayed” is part two of the “House of Night” series by P.C. and Kristin Cast. The committee held a public hearing Tuesday night, the second step in the process that followed a request for reevaluation of the book.”
Andrea Cremer – “At age 32, I was sent to the principal’s office for the first time. Already possessing a butterfly-filled stomach in anticipation of my debut appearance as a school speaker, being lead into the administrator’s office only to have the door soundly closed was hardly the welcome I’d hoped for. I’d been pulled aside prior to my presentation because a parent had objected to my visit, citing the inappropriate content of my novel, “Nightshade.” Surprising news given the book wouldn’t be published for another three weeks.”