School Libraries

Hernando: Hernando schools won't ban book

Bob Cox writes, From the St. Petersburg (Flordia) Times,

"The Judy Blume novel Deenie will remain in Hernando County elementary schools, despite recommendations from a review committee and the superintendent to remove it.

But to get the 31-year-old book, students will have to bring a note from home.

"I can't see denying its availability if some parents decide it's okay for their child to read," School Board vice chairman Jim Malcolm said. "Some people are offended by the content. Others aren't. I will defer to individual parent choice for their child."

Pupils turn librarians

An Anonymous Patron refers us to this story about a library in South London letting YA's select some of the new books for the library.

Libraries may restrict chatroom access

ic Wales reports that some libraries in South Wales may ban children from using free Intenet access to access Chatrooms in the hopes of protecting "children against the downside of the Internet."

Adult magazine part of school fundraiser

Bob Cox writes to share this story about a "shocking" magazine discovered in a school fund-raising sale.

"it is natural to assume that magazines purchased through a school fundraising drive would be suitable for children, especially since children are the ones doing the buying and selling. So you can imagine a Grandville mom's surprise when her daughter was able to order a magazine full of sexual content.

Asimov's Science Fiction is the magazine in question, and from the outside cover, doesn't look like an 'adults-only' publication. But open it up and you will find it is."

Or, is it?

No Librarians Left Behind: Preparing for Next-Generation Libraries

Stephen Abram presents an informative essay (in 2 parts) on trends that information professionals in the school library sector need to be looking out for. Part 1 covers trends in searching and web technology, whilst part 2 deals with the trend towards e-learning.

'Weird' stories OK in context

With the exception of a story about an anorexic dog, reading lessons several families had called "weird" and inappropriate for children will remain in the four elementary schools here.

The Beatrice Public Schools Board of Education agreed unanimously Monday that most of the stories would stay, taking the recommendation of a committee formed to investigate the books.

Parents and a teacher spoke against the decision at a board meeting.

Third-grade teacher Michele Blum said she didn't want her students reading stories in which characters made fun of people with disabilities.
Full Story.

Former Board Member Thinks Farting Dog Story Stinks

A former school board member from the West Salem (WI) School District has gotten the attention of the school board president with his concerns about a book at the elementary school library. Walter the Farting Dog, is a popular children's story book about a pooting pooch rescued from a dog pound, and whose problem...........(spoiler alert!) thwarts some burglars. The complainant doesn't feel like it's an appropriate book for his grandson, who attends the school. A special meeting, which will bypass the district's reconsideration of materials procedure, has been called to discuss the removal of the book. Speaking in defense of the book, publisher Richard Grossinger of North Atlantic Books/Frog Ltd called the book a fable that teaches that having undesireable traits doesn’t mean that people (or dogs) "can’t be successful or contribute to society.�
More here from American Libraries Online.

Books on occult subject of vigil in Washington, NJ

A Follow Up Story on The Devil's Storybookand The Devil: Great Mysteries, Opposing Viewpoints, were checked out from the Chestnut Ridge Middle School library by David O'Quinn, 14,an eighth-grader, this past fall.

A local businessman is organizing a candlelight prayer vigil to rally support for a group that wants restrictions placed on occult-related books in township school libraries.

"It's not a protest," said Martino Cartier, 28, who is planning the event for Sunday at Washington Lake Park. Cartier ownsMartino's Salon XI, a local beauty salon.
The group is not asking for an outright ban, but wants the school district to create a policy requiring younger students to get their parents' permission before checking out books with occult references, said Tahir Mella, O'Quinn's stepfather.
Via Gary "Hairy" Price

School Librarian in Trouble for Black History Lesson

bentley writes "As part of a Black History Month library lesson, a Clark County (Nev.) elementary school librarian separated the 3rd graders by skin color and gave preferential treatment to the black children. The school started an investigation after parents objected. More."

Blume's <em>Deenie</em> still controversial after 30 years

Here's a story from the St. Petersburg [FL] Times in which author Judy Blume defends her novel Deenie against its latest challenge. Blume recommends that the people who want to restrict young people's access to the book, based on a few passages in which the young adolescent title character explores her sexuality, talk to the children who might read it before making a final decision. She suggests that it's the adults, not the youngsters, who find something inappropriate about the topics in Deenie. Blume rejects the contention of some Hernando County school board members that she wrote the book, published 30 years ago, to "push buttons."

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