Virginia Regulatory Town Hall
Department of Education
State Board of Education
Regulations Governing Local School Boards and School Divisions [8 VAC 20 ‑ 720]
Action Amendments Regarding Use of Controversial or Sensitive Instructional Materials
Comment Period Ended on 1/15/2014
Previous Comment     Next Comment     Back to List of Comments
12/19/13  12:15 pm
Commenter: Tiffany Hardy, Hampton City Schools

Please reject this amendment

Please reject this amendment!  Who will be given the final authority to determine what material is considered "sensitive" and what material is deemed appropriate?   I do agree that parents should be able to request alternate readings if/when they feel assigned texts are not appropriate for their children.  We should recognize that parents should have the final say as to what they want their children exposed.  While one parent may find the Harry Potter collection "sensitive" because of the inclusion of "witchcraft," another parent may encourage his/her children to read the collection.  That should be a parent's right and we can respond to individual requests for alternative literature.  I do not agree that teachers or divisions should be responsible for identifying which items are "sensitive" because that is highly subjective and up to the perspective of the individual.  In addition, teachers do not always know a full quarter or semester of literary selections and therefore cannot provide a "syllabus" of readings far in advance.  That completely contradicts the expectations for teachers to make selections in response to the needs of the students - based on data as the year progresses.   Communication is important but not in the form recommended.

CommentID: 29731