Book Censorship

Texas School District to Remove Books on Race and Gender

By |2022-09-15T12:54:54-04:00September 15th, 2022|News|

The National Coalition Against Censorship (NCAC) has written to Grapevine-Colleyville Independent School District in Grapevine, Texas, regarding recent policy changes which seem to allow library books to be removed based on the ideas they contain. As we understand the changes to Board Policy EMB (Local), the policy has been amended to restrict the use of instructional materials that advocate [...]

NCAC calls on Norman Oklahoma School District to Clarify HB 1775 Only Applies to Curriculum

By |2022-09-12T15:03:41-04:00September 12th, 2022|News|

A high school English teacher at Norman School District in Norman, Oklahoma, was recently admonished for sharing a QR Code with students that led to book recommendations from the Brooklyn Public Library. A parent filed a complaint and claimed that recommended materials supported critical race theory, which is against the law in Oklahoma under HB 1775. HB 1775 has put [...]

Madison, Mississippi, School District Restricts Books on Race and LGBTQ+ Themes

By |2022-08-26T15:08:18-04:00August 26th, 2022|News|

The National Coalition Against Censorship (NCAC) has written to the Madison County School Board in Ridgeland, Mississippi, regarding recent restrictions on 10 books, requiring students to obtain parental permission in order to read them. The 10 books in question address race-related or LQBTQ+ themes, and we are concerned that the district may have unconstitutionally targeted these books for the [...]

Naples, Florida, School District Adds Hundreds of “Advisory Notices” to Library Books

By |2022-08-24T17:54:50-04:00August 24th, 2022|News|

The National Coalition Against Censorship has written to the School Board of the Collier County Public Schools in Naples, Florida, after District libraries recently added an “Advisory Notice” to hundreds of library books—raising censorship concerns. Placing advisory notices, or “red-flagging” books often misleadingly reduces complex literary works to a few isolated elements—those that some individuals may find objectionable—rather than [...]

Conroe, Texas, School District to Remove “Obscene” Books from Libraries

By |2022-08-31T15:18:31-04:00August 22nd, 2022|News|

The National Coalition Against Censorship has written to the Conroe Independent School District in Conroe, Texas, regarding recently adopted policies which require parental permission to check out allegedly obscene books from libraries while they are under review. Under the new policies, students will be required to have parental permission to check out challenged books, if the review could “reasonably [...]

Florida School District Removes Call Me Max and I Am Jazz from Libraries

By |2022-04-20T15:24:15-04:00April 20th, 2022|News|

Kyle Lukoff’s Call Me Max and Jazz Jennings’s I Am Jazz, which both feature transgender main characters, were removed from school libraries in Palm Beach County, Florida, without review. NCAC has written to the district urging them to immediately return the books to library shelves. The removal was purportedly in compliance with Florida House Bill 1557 which was recently signed [...]

NCAC Objects to Removal of Library Books in Texas School District

By |2022-04-06T14:15:22-04:00April 6th, 2022|News|

NCAC has written to officials at Fredericksburg Independent School District in Texas after numerous books were removed from district libraries without a formal review based on arguments that they are “pervasively vulgar.” The books in question, which include, among others, Jesse Andrews’s Me and Earl and the Dying Girl and Stephen Chbosky’s The Perks of Being a Wallflower, address issues that [...]

Texas Students Distribute BIPOC and LGBTQ+ Books During ‘FReadom Week’ Initiative | Student Perspective

By |2022-03-23T17:39:47-04:00March 23rd, 2022|Blog, News|

When Jerry Craft's New Kid was banned from school libraries in Katy, Texas earlier this year for "pervasively vulgar" content, I defended his book and advocated against this inexplicable censorship. After that, school board meetings in Texas only intensified. After months of persistent demands for intellectual freedom being outnumbered by conservatives and drowned out by more book bans, we finally [...]

Acclaimed Challenged Author Jason Reynolds Will Headline 2021 Banned Books Week

By |2021-04-12T16:53:44-04:00April 13th, 2021|Banned Books Week, News|

Jason Reynolds to headline Banned Books Week 2021, which has the theme, “Books Unite Us. Censorship Divides Us.” Two of Reynolds' books for young people made the Top 10 banned and challenged books of 2020 for their handling of issues around racism and racial justice.

The Free Expression Educators Handbook

By |2020-12-19T16:54:19-05:00November 19th, 2020|Resources|

The Free Expression Educators Handbook contains practical tools and advice for managing book challenges and censorship controversies in schools and school libraries. The handbook, created by NCAC in collaboration with the National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE), is intended for teachers, librarians, and school administrators.  It offers guidance for educators developing inclusive and viewpoint-neutral instructional material policies, including sample [...]

Alaska Community Unites in Opposition to Book Ban

By |2020-09-15T12:31:31-04:00July 17th, 2020|News|

When a school board in Alaska voted in April to remove five classic books from a high school reading list, it had no idea that it would outrage many in the community as well as several alumni of the school who are now rock stars. Although the Matanuska-Susitna (Mat-Su) Borough School Board reversed its decision a month later, the controversy [...]

Alaska School Board Rescinds Ban of Classic Books

By |2020-06-08T11:47:51-04:00May 19th, 2020|News|

Following widespread protest by local citizens and national groups, including National Coalition Against Censorship, an Alaska school board has voted 6 to 1 to rescind its decision to remove five classic works of fiction from the reading list for 11th grade English classes. Students will once again be able to read:  I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings by Maya [...]

Remembering Toni Morrison

By |2019-08-07T10:59:57-04:00August 6th, 2019|Blog|

Joan Bertin (former executive director, NCAC), Toni Morrison, Fran Lebowitz “The thought that leads me to contemplate with dread the erasure of other voices, of unwritten novels, poems whispered or swallowed for fear of being overheard by the wrong people, outlawed languages flourishing underground, essayists’ questions challenging authority never being posed, unstaged plays, canceled films—that thought is a nightmare. As [...]

Literary Classics Removed from High-School’s Alternative Reading List in Alaska

By |2020-01-03T15:44:35-05:00February 27th, 2017|Blog|

Alice Walker’s The Color Purple, Toni Morrison’s The Bluest Eye, Khaled Hosseini’s The Kite Runner, J.D. Salinger’s Catcher in the Rye, and Sherman Alexie’s The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian were flagged for "explicit, graphic" content.

Vermont School Disinvites Childrens Author Because of Book About Heroin Addiction; UPDATE: School Reverses Decision, Will Carry Book in Library

By |2020-01-03T15:31:03-05:00June 10th, 2016|Blog, NCAC at work|

Kate Messner speaking event at South Burlington's Chamberlin Elementary School after the school discovered her latest book was about heroin addiction.

“Uncle Bobby’s Wedding” Will Stay in Missouri Library

By |2020-01-03T13:49:40-05:00October 25th, 2012|Blog|

Today the Brentwood Public Library board handed down its unanimous decision to keep Uncle Bobby's Wedding, a picture book by Sarah S. Brannen that had recently drawn objections from a patron. Library Director Vicky Wood initially offered a written response to the complaint, affirming the library's duty to provide access to a variety of materials: "Today, even in Brentwood, there [...]

Three Cheers for Broken Arrow School Board!

By |2019-03-15T17:10:50-04:00May 17th, 2012|Blog|

After a busy week working to fight back against book bans and challenges, we were thrilled to see some good news. A Tulsa school district recently heard a parent's challenge to the book Carter Finally Gets It by Brent Crawford.  The parent who challenged the book called the book "vulgar, vulgar, vulgar," objecting to its references to masturbation, pornography and an [...]

US Government, Sponsor of Book Censorship

By |2016-01-14T12:56:34-05:00January 24th, 2011|Blog|

NCAC occasionally publishes guest blogs on topics related to free speech. The views in these articles do not necessarily reflect the official position of NCAC, however they raise important issues for discussion. By Vel Nirtist How do you keep the unwashed masses known as the "public" from highly prestigious and quite remunerative pursuit known as "public debate" which rightly belongs [...]

Song of Solomon Prevails in Franklin Township!

By |2020-01-03T13:38:14-05:00July 9th, 2010|Blog|

After a long and drawn-out challenge process, this week Toni Morrison’s Song of Solomon finally prevailed in Franklin Township!  The denouement to this extended drama came down to a special convening of the Franklin Township school board set for this past Monday evening (July 6th).  No one knew how it would turn out.  New members of the school board, whose [...]

Two words on the chalkboard in Oregon draw complaints from parents

By |2020-01-03T13:36:35-05:00January 27th, 2010|Blog|

Athey Creek Middle School in West Linn, Oregon has taught its eighth grade students a First Amendment curriculum for ten years, addressing the controversies surrounding commonly-banned books and reading the books in class. The unit drew no major criticism until early last month, when librarian and teacher Michael Diltz faced ire from several parents. He had written two common “obscenities” [...]

Celebrating 35 years of defending free speech

By |2020-01-03T13:36:05-05:00October 7th, 2009|Blog|

It's our 35th Anniversary! The typical gift for 35 years of marriage is jade or coral - well, we won't hand out earrings or take you deep sea diving, but we DO have an exciting evening planned to benefit NCAC and honor renowned and much-censored author Judy Blume! Join us on Monday, October 19, 2009 for A Night of Comedy [...]

Kids’ Right to Read Project Opposes Censorship in Ohio Schools

By |2019-03-07T23:01:08-05:00October 5th, 2009|Blog|

On September 29th, Wyoming City Schools' School Board voted to back Superintendent, Gail Kist-Kline's plan to re-evaluate every non-textbook teachers recommend to students. Staff members will now be asked to rate books based on a new 4-point criteria, which inclues the extent to which a book "could create controversy among students, parents and community groups. However, removing books from reading [...]

Banned Books Week Book Censorship Update

By |2020-01-03T13:36:02-05:00September 30th, 2009|Blog|

Some good and bad news for you today, folks, on the fifth day of Banned Books Week… First the good news: In Pennsylvania, Downingtown West High School followed model procedure in addressing a challenge against Laurie Halse Anderson’s Twisted.  We are please to report school officials and parents resolved the issue amicably through discussion.  For more information click here. Also [...]

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