Wednesday, September 24, 2014

2014 Banned Books Week: Most Challenged Books in Texas Schools

Since 2002, the American Civil Liberties Union of Texas has posted an annual report, Free People Read Freely, during Banned Books Week that provides information about challenged books that have been removed, restricted, or retained in Texas public and charter school libraries and class reading lists during the previous school year. This information is obtained through an Open Records request by the ACLU under the Texas Public Information Act.

Here, in no particular order, are the eight children's books on the lower level of the Dick Smith Library that were challenged (elsewhere!) in 2013-2014.  Click on the titles to get the call numbers and more information about the books:

1. It’s Perfectly Normal by Robie Harris
Reason Cited: Inappropriate for grade level (a middle school)
Action Taken: Retained (no restrictions)

2. Esperanza Rising by Pam Munoz
Reason Cited: Politically, socially, or racial offensive (parent felt book promoted illegal immigration and was not age appropriate)
Action Taken: Retained (no restrictions) - 5th/6th grade

3. Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian by Sherman Alexie
Reason Cited: Sexual content
Action Taken: Retained (no restrictions) - intermediate school

4. Lovingly Alice by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor
Reason Cited: Sexual content or nudity
Action Taken: Use restricted (book was moved from elementary to secondary campus)

A Bad Kitty Christmas by Nick Bruel
Reason Cited: Promotes homosexual/lesbian couples
Action Taken: Banned from a PreK-8 charter school

6. The Giver by Lois Lowry
Reason Cited: Offensive to religious sensitivities
Action Taken: Alternate book allowed (curriculum only)

7. A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens
Reason Cited: Parent did not want the student reading about ghosts
Action Taken: Alternate assignment was provided for the student

8. Persepolis by Marjane Satrapi
Reason Cited: Politically, racially, or socially offensive
Action Taken: Retained (no restrictions) in a high school

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