Banned Books And Twin Falls School District Policy


I’ve never been someone who thought banning books was a good idea. And if you really look at some of the banned books, it might surprise you. Some of them make absolutely no sense to me. But the Twin Falls School District explained to me how the books make it onto the shelves of every school in Twin Falls.

Banning a book means that an individual, government official or organization removes a book from library or bookstore shelves because of its content.

This is a list of historically banned books. That doesn’t mean the Twin Falls School District banned those books. Some of them may be on the shelves of age-appropriate schools.

Books

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A surprising list of banned books

Anne Frank’s diary is on the list of banned books. I think this book is one of the most important ones that everyone should read. There should not be a single person on this planet who has not read this book because it is powerful. Those who do not know the history of the past are doomed to repeat it.

Ray Bradbury’s Fahrenheit 451 is ironically about the burning and censorship of books. I found this to be one of my favorite books of all time. The government comes and takes books and burns them. Nobody can read. Ironically, it is on the list of banned books.

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The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald is a classic. Again one of my favorite books of all time. The book is so raw and relatable. The struggles with unrequited love, trying to cling to the past and materialism. The desire for grandiose parties and extravagance is something that anyone can easily grasp. Dreams versus reality can hit hard, especially in this book.

To Kill A Mockingbird by Lee Harper is another classic and I don’t understand why it’s banned. It highlights the struggles that really took place when racism was at its height in the United States. Accounts like this really happened and it’s important to know the story.

I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings by Maya Angelou I think this is an incredibly powerful book on racism and the story behind it. This book explains how terribly deeply rooted racism shaped and destroyed lives at the time. It’s a great story that people need to know.

The Catcher In The Rye by JD Salinger is an amazing story. I have no idea why it’s so controversial unless the character is so matter-of-fact about things. It’s a coming-of-age story, and it might be something other teenagers have felt as well.

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Twilight by Stephenie Meyer, apart from the writing style being horrible in my personal opinion, there is no reason to ban this book. So many young people identify with and are entertained by this series of books. It’s a fictional love story that people love to get involved in. There is nothing wrong with fantasy.

Suzanne Collins’ Hunger Games is another generational favourite. The series is great and makes young people think, could this actually happen? I also have no idea why this series is banned.

Stephen Brashear

Stephen Brashear

The Twin Falls School District’s stance on banned books

So every librarian at every school chooses which books go on their shelves. The librarians know the content and what is appropriate for the age group they are targeting. The odds of In The Rye catcher ending up on a shelf at Bickel Elementary are pretty much zero, but it could be on the shelves at Twin Falls High School. School district librarians are open to hearing from parents about the content on their shelves, and they haven’t had a challenge in over a decade. The librarians pay attention to what goes on the shelves for the age groups they serve.

Photo credit: Shunya Koide on Unsplash

Photo credit: Shunya Koide on Unsplash

Parents can check libraries

If a parent has concerns about books on the library shelves their children visit, they can contact the school and see the material on offer. Parents have full rights to see what course materials students have access to, including the library.

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If you are upset about any of the content, the school district will respond in accordance with applicable policies. Librarians work really hard to keep updated books and fresh material on their shelves. As a parent, you always have a voice.

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