Ashley Hope Pérez responds to the recent censorship of her award-winning book Out of Darkness in Lake Travis ISD and Leander ISD, Texas.
Examining the top 10 challenged books of 2020 during Banned Books Week reveals deeper and more widespread attempts to limit intellectual freedom.
Charles Darwin’s On the Origin of Species is the most commonly banned science book and is important in laying the foundation for evolutionary biology. Darwin’s widely accepted theory of natural selection is the key to understanding genetics, pathogens, and epidemiology – critically important topics as misconceptions about science influence politics and public health policy.
South Dakota’s Department of Education eliminates numerous proposed revisions to its Social Studies standards related to the Oceti Sakowin in favor of a more “honest, patriotic” curriculum.
The School Library Journal’s survey on children’s/YA collection development and weeding, published this past June, paints the picture one would expect: circulation of print materials was down 73%, circulation of ebooks was up 91%, and both public and school libraries decided to purchase more digital materials. However, the report did contain at least one surprising piece of information: a “quarter of respondents…say their weeding criteria have changed over the last few years.” One reason for these changes? A growing “awareness of unconscious racial bias, inclusion and diversity.”
AASL formally dissuades school librarians from labeling items according to content and reading level.
I felt fairly prepared to handle a materials challenge, but as I talk with other librarians, I see this is an area of great concern.
The ongoing struggle to ensure racial justice in American society should prompt educators to take a closer look at the wording of history standards and the learning resources used by students. Then, collaborate with school librarians to provide students with a more accurate, complex look at history and current events.
By: guest contributor Brian E. Wilson, ALSC Liaison for the ALA Committee on Professional Ethics. Acclaimed children’s author Kate Klise talks about how Cathy Evans’ “green dot collection” inspired her and her sister M. Sarah Klise to create the hilarious and inventive new novel, Don’t Check Out This Book!.
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.