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
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1/11/14  4:33 pm
Commenter: Deb

Support the BOE amendment to the regulation

I wish this had been passed years ago. My kids are now in college, and took issue with the content of materials they were required to read in their honors and AP classes. When I addressed a school representative on this, she commented that the books had won literary awards. Great, but some of these books are not appropriate for the age of students that are directed to read them. Additionally, my kids' teachers do not appropriately discuss the objectionable themes - the actions of the characters, why they are wrong, what other actions could've been taken by characters, etc. They assign the books (some as required summer reading) with little or NO discussion whatsoever, leading students to develop their own ideas of right and wrong, acceptable behaviors and norms in society.  There are other books that can convey man vs. man, man vs. nature, and other literary concepts, without the offensive content and language in these books. As another commentor stated, the "shock and awe" method is not appropriate or even healthy for a good population of our students. I have no kids to benefit from this, but felt I had to voice my opinion. Additionally, we the high rate of acting out of our youth, the educators have a responsibility to act in their best interests! Suicide, violence, sex occur with our students - look to the possible reasons why, and make a change. School tried 'whole language' years ago and found that it failed the students, so they changed teaching for the students. We must do the same with these books! 

CommentID: 29992