OIF webinar featuring Pat Scales and Jamie LaRue

Censorship, Intellectual Freedom Issues, Intellectual Freedom Manual, Office for Intellectual Freedom, Online learning


New Webinar! Mark your calendars for August 19th @ 1pm CST.

Angry and Alarmed: Embracing the Concerned Parent

We’re told that Step One for addressing any challenge or concern expressed about a book is listening.

Which sounds easy enough but I’ve heard and seen librarians shut down the conversation with defensiveness and self-righteousness. I’ve BEEN that librarian. You feel protective of your books and your collection and how dare someone criticize them. But we can encourage a happy ending for everyone if we change our attitude towards a concerned parent.

Just as your patrons and students have a right to read, individuals also have a right to express their opinions about library resources and services.  If we change the dynamic of the interaction, it’s possible that an “expression of concern” can be resolved after the individual has had the opportunity to express personal feelings about a library resource. Maybe the person only wanted to be heard and have his opinions acknowledged.

Isn’t learning how to have that conversation be successful worth it to avoid a formal book challenge? empathy

Pat Scales and James LaRue, both acclaimed writers and librarians, will talk about difficult conversations with parents. Parents are often coming from an emotional place that has less to do with a book they’re upset about and more to do with a changing world and a loss of control as their children grow up. They will share insights to guide the response from defensive to embracing, empathetic, and educational.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.