School board removes 2 books from school

July 26, 2011 at 4:02 PM

REPUBLIC, Mo., July 26 (UPI) -- Republic, Mo., school district's board voted to remove two books from the high school.

Four Republic School Board members in attendance at the Monday night school board meeting voted 4-0 to remove one book from the school's library and one from the school's curriculum, The Republic Monitor reported.

The vote came after a complaint was made by a community member naming three books as inappropriate for students. "Speak," by Laurie Halsey Anderson, "Slaughterhouse-Five," by Kurt Vonnegut and "Twenty Boy Summer" by Sarah Ockler were the books listed in the original complaint.

Whereas "Speak" made the cut with the board, "Slaughter House Five," which was part of an upper-level English course, will be removed from the curriculum, and "Twenty Boy Summer" will be removed from the library as it was found too sexually explicit.

"It's written to a young audience but when you look at the standards ... the book promotes or sensationalizes sexual promiscuity," said Republic School Superintendent Vern Minor.

"We just felt that of the three books, the two we have pulled aren't age-appropriate and send the wrong message," agreed board member Ken Knierim.

Melissa Duvall, the only board member to have read all three books proposed to be banned, said the school board's vote was more about policy and less a criticism of the books in question.

"Were not making a judgment call on if the book is good or bad, we just want to make sure it's age-appropriate," Duvall said.

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