An anti-LGBTQ law in South Carolina was recently struck down in a positive move toward a more inclusive and scientifically factual comprehensive health education curriculum.
Overall, going to legislative advocacy day was a really positive experience. I think it is important for librarians to speak up about the importance of libraries and the needs of our patrons. Many of our patrons – especially in school libraries – can’t speak up for themselves about what they need. In today’s fiscal climate, I think we need to speak up to make sure we can continue to serve our patrons’ needs.
The Blaine Amendment, ensconced in some 37 state constitutions, prohibits the expenditure of public funds for private religious education. But the United States Supreme Court seems poised to strike it down.
This year many libraries will be marking the anniversary of the 19th Amendment. The anniversary presents an opportunity for uplifting and highlighting voices that have gone mostly unheard.
Over the past few years, several state legislatures have considered strengthening media literacy skills instruction in schools based on recent research findings. But how can teachers instruct students to become critical consumers of media if politicians falsely label credible sources of information as “fake news?”
Sexual education in public schools has long been a controversial topic. But state legislatures must take a closer look at comprehensive health education laws if educators are to address medically accurate information with students and stop spreading disinformation.
By: Guest Contributor Augustus Wachbrit. Great literature and social scientific research overlap in that they often concern topics of interpersonal, political, or societal importance; when either were to be lost, human dignity surely suffers. Being vocally opposed to the censorship of the arts or the sciences is a necessity these days—one of the reasons why Banned Books Week is a fantastic initiative.
Libraries want to provide high quality, affordable, safe learning platforms, but that can be challenging. With lots of choices and often confusing terms of service agreements, libraries are asking themselves, “What should we buy?”
Students do not necessarily jump for joy if you tell them they will be learning about intellectual freedom and the First Amendment. However, many of these concepts are included in national and state-level learning and library standards and are important for them to learn about as citizens and future voters. Read more for ideas on how school librarians and teachers can actively engage teen learners in the critical thinking necessary to reach these learning goals.
As a librarian I believe everyone should have access to the information they need, but as a parent I can understand how the lack of parental control presented by school programs and unrestricted library books can be very unnerving. Much like protests to the teaching of sexuality education in schools, books on the subject are challenged in libraries due to the role they play in the spread of such important information.