Just in Time for Banned Books Week...

Several episodes in Missouri this month have brought issues of school book banning and censorship to national attention.  This is just in time for Banned Books Week, which is celebrated every year at the end of September.  This year's dates are September 25 to October 2. 

Issues of book censorship can be tricky, particularly in schools.  Some content may be offensive to some people, and that has to be weighed against the educational value of a text when districts are making choices for students.  Whether it's required reading, optional reading, or just something in the school library, schools often find themselves on the defensive. 

Here are links to information about the situations in Missouri.  Remember, these articles are talking about the reasons people have for censoring the materials, so there may be content that requires some maturity.

In Stockton, Missouri, the school board voted to remove The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian from the curriculum and from the high school library.  Read more about the school board meeting in this article

In Republic, Missouri, a parent has made a formal complaint about three books used in various ways at the high school: Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson, Slaughterhouse-Five by Kurt Vonnegut, and Twenty-Boy Summer by Sarah Ockler.  Watch a news broadcast summarizing the challenge, then read Laurie Halse Anderson's response in this interview.

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