Reuters – “A school board in southwest Missouri on Monday restored two books it had banned from public schools for being contrary to teachings in the Bible. The Republic School Board voted 6-0 to make the two books – “Slaughterhouse-Five” and “Twenty Boy Summer” – available to students for independent reading as long as they are kept in a secure section of the school library. Only parents or guardians can check them out.”
News Leader – “Weeks after a series of national groups demanded the Republic school board reverse a decision to remove two books from the high school, the governing body will take up the issue. The board will meet today to discuss revising a policy that paved the way for the books — “Slaughterhouse-Five” by Kurt Vonnegut and “Twenty Boy Summer” by Sarah Ockler — to be pulled from classrooms and the library. Superintendent Vern Minor didn’t return calls, but a proposed revision to the book standards policy posted online outlines one significant change”
Care2 – “A Catholic school student who identifies herself by the avatar name “Nekochan” started an unofficial library of banned books that she runs out of her locker at school. She began to lend books to her classmates when her school banned a long list of classic titles, including The Canterbury Tales, Paradise Lost and Animal Farm. Concerned about getting in trouble for violating school rules, Nekochan wrote a letter to an online advice column to ask if it was “ok to run an illegal library” from her locker.”
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.”