|Back to April Ed Reporter|
|NUMBER 171||THE NEWSPAPER OF EDUCATION RIGHTS||APRIL 2000|
|Examples of Outrageous Classroom Assignments|
Our 10-year-old daughter has been reading a book aloud in her class called My Brother Sam Is Dead. This book is filled with profanity and violence.
Given the current violent climate in our schools, we are appalled at the fact that forcing children to read such "literature" is even possible. We feel as if the school is condoning the behavior described in the book, and that our daughter's innocence has been violated.
The school district has informed us of its policy to automatically list the Newbery Awards and Honor Books (of which Brother Sam is one) for use in the classroom without reviewing them. This is a travesty and must be stopped. Please get the word out so we can eliminate this atrocity for the sake of all children.
- Kelly Dunn
Editor's note: For 78 years, the American Library Assocation has given Newbery Awards in recognition of "the most distinguished contributions" to children's literature. For many of those years the award-winners were excellent examples of wholesome children's stories. Since the late 1960s, however, researchers caution that the books increasingly reflect a humanist world view, and many include profanity, violence, sexual content, and death.