Life Marriage & Family Religious Liberty


What kinds of books are available at your elementary school?

Posted in Marriage & Family on: May 19th, 2011
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Did you happen to catch this story on CBS 5 Phoenix? A local 8-year-old girl got a “disturbing” shock after checking out a book from her elementary school library on the recommendation of a few classmates.

 “A fourth grader at Quail Run Elementary School checked out a book this week, that’s raising more than just eyebrows among parents and administrators.

Eight-year-old Faith was reading “Lovingly Alice,” from the popular “Alice” series by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor, after a couple of her classmates recommended it.

Faith says it first covered menstruation, but “when it got to the more older and grown up stuff, I was like, ‘Whoa, that’s just a little disturbing,’ so I told my mom.”

Her mother, Hilary, was shocked at what her daughter was reading. She brought the book to the attention of the school principal, and read him graphic passages from the book, which includes a very specific discussion about sexual intercourse.”

Perhaps what is most troublesome about this story is the fact that this was an elementary school library – not a public library – and not in some far away state, but right here in our own backyard.

At CAP it’s our goal to pass legislation to promote parents’ right to direct the upbringing and education of their children, but stories like this one remind us that this is an ongoing battle.

Here are some simple things that we as parents can do to better protect our kids from these situations: 

  • Know your rights as a parent! In 2010, CAP worked with legislators to pass the Parents’ Bill of Rights. This year, we worked to pass a bill to extend these rights to parents of children in charter schools.
  • Talk with your kids. This seems like a basic principle, but the only way this book was discovered was by a mom talking with her daughter about school. There is so much that goes on during a school day that may not be covered in parent-teacher conferences or show up in class curriculum.
  • If you have questions, resource CAP. We’re here to help. It was because a concerned parent stepped forward that we were involved in extending the Parents’ Bill of Rights to charter schools.

Posted by Amy Adams

Amy is the Community Action Director at Center for Arizona Policy. She loves to help people get informed, energized, and equipped to take a prayerful and active role in influencing public policy and promoting foundational values. Her work with churches, community leaders, and citizen activists on issues close to the heart of God keeps her on her toes (and on her knees!).


6 Responses

  1. Nancy Stovall says:

    Found this very interesting. Years ago I found a lot of “sex education” material very pornographic–that was being shown in Science and Health classes in New Mexico public schools–jr. high and up. In the children’s section of the public library were pamphlets from Planned Parenthood on everything from “how to” have sex to “same sex” experiences. This is NOT new; it’s just no-one’s checking what is getting into children’s hands–or monitoring what is in the classroom.

  2. Jim O'Connor says:

    Amy,

    Thank you and the fine team at CAP for all you do to inform us and guard our rights.
    Blessings to you all.

  3. Sharran says:

    Hi everyone,

    I know that this feels disturbing. However, let me post some information on this topic as a school of library science masters student. What we have to remember is that if it is not a private elementary school it is still paid with tax dollars and therefore a public elementary school.

    Second, libraries pride themselves on being all about intellectual freedom and providing access to such, no matter the age of a person. According to library policies, librarians are not allowed to remove or discard any book from their collection just because it is offensive to their own beliefs. The exception to this rule is if the majority of the public would find the purpose of the entire book to be sexual in nature AS WELL AS offensive.

    There are ways to get around this that differ between schools. In some schools, parents can ask the librarian not to allow their specific child(ren) to check out certain types of books (s.a those books that are considered a higher reading grade level than the child is in). (See if that option is available). In addition, challenging a book and getting it removed from the shelves can be hard to do depending on the school. Most schools have a process that one would have to go though including the challenger of the book reading the entire book before any meetings are held on the subject.

    Like I said I’m a student and not a practicing librarian but just thought I would share what I have learned. I hope this helps.

  4. Danielle H. says:

    I am a teacher at an elementary school in Arizona and was present during a video and question/answer session with 5th grade girls. (Parents had to sign a waiver allowing their student to watch the video.) I was actually surprised that the video shown to the 5th grade girls was very good and not sexually explicit. It mostly discussed what changes a girl will notice around that age including menstruation. When the girls asked the nurse questions such as, “Where do babies come from?” the nurse respectfully told the students that they need to ask “those types of questions” to their parents. I did not however read the literature that was sent home with the students so I’m not sure if it contained any innapropriate information or not.

    On the flip side I was at a different school in the past where students whose parents chose to decline to have their student attend a video session where teased not only by other students but teachers as well!

    Thank you Amy for bringing this very important topic to our attention.

  5. Hilary Lockhart says:

    Amy- I just found your site and would love to connect with you sometime. I am driving through Canada starting tomorrow and will arrive in Alaska in about 5 days. If you find time to email me between now and then – I would love to connect and discuss this situation in detail. I am hoping that maybe together we can come up with some long term solutions to this big problem – books in our elementary schools containing sexual content.

    Looking forward to chatting!

  6. TSN JOHN says:

    I rarely respond to individual comments to a blog article, but in this instance feel compelled to reply to Miss Sharran, the library science master student. Your remarks, possibly passed in total sincerity, are illustrative of the success of the leftist brainwashing that is taking place in our government schools, colleges and universities. Because this particular school is a government school for the “public,” paid for with tax dollars, the curriculum and library content ARE the concerns of the public parents whose children are attending as well as the public who are footing the bills. It is NOT isolated from their concerns and attention just because it is a government institution.

    School libraries being “all about intellectual freedom and providing access to such” is the mantra the left uses to force their social engineering onto young children while keeping it hidden from the parents and tax-payers. Intellectual freedom is reading about airplanes and rocket propulsion, great accomplishments of great scientists and doctors, and the divinely driven history of the United States of America. Forcing sexual promiscuity and perversion onto children is destructive and intellectually dishonest. “How-to” books about juvenile promiscuity and sexual perversion have never been “age-appropriate” for K-12 readers, and never will be—if the parents will stand up against it. The leftists know of the great potential in their education association hands for capturing the minds of the children and making the family unit and faith irrelevant.

    The belief that “librarians are not allowed to remove or discard any book…” is also disingenuous on its face. Librarians should be adult members of the community, concerned with the proper education of the students in their care, and respecting of the rights of the parents to raise their children. If a librarian finds material in the library that is patently destructive, she has the responsibility to isolate it from the school population and immediately bring it to the attention of the school principal, the School Board and the leaders of the Parent-Teacher Association. It is her duty to protect the students and their relationships with their families by taking action.

    Miss Sharran, you are probably a very nice young lady and hopefully quite dedicated to being a good librarian. I would encourage you to continue reading about the good works of these great people at the Center for Arizona Policy. They will continue to describe how ordinary citizens can—nay,must—be involved in protecting and shaping our future, and you will then marvel at the results of their (and your) intense efforts.

    Thank you, CAP and Amy Adams, for your courage and unflagging devotion to faith, family and country.

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