With the majority of a high school library’s irreplaceable book collection documenting African-American history lost, the ire of the community grows.
Highland Park residents will hold a public meeting at 6 p.m. Monday at the city’s Nandi’s Knowledge Café on Woodward Avenue to discuss the loss and what, if anything, can be done.
“Our history was stolen, it was trashed,” said Linda Wheeler, a former special education teacher for the Highland Park School District said of the tossed books. “It rivaled the collections of many community colleges. You can’t put a value on that. It is malicious destruction, it’s a crime.”
Earlier this month thousands of books from the library of Highland Park Renaissance Academy were thrown in the trash. Wheeler said the collection consisted of 10,000 books.
Wheeler’s father and longtime resident Earl Wheeler said a parent volunteer in the district told him the library’s books were thrown out.
“There were at least four (trash bins) and two were left before we discovered what was happening,” Wheeler said.
Wheeler called historian Paul Lee, who rallied a group of volunteers. The group went at night with flashlights, climbed into two bins and retrieved 1,000 books.
Wheeler said he was told the library was being rehabilitated by the Leona Group, a charter management company that operates schools in Highland Park.
From The Detroit News.