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KRRP Sixth Grade Can Really Kill You Letter 20140514 District 196 Minnesota

KRRP Sixth Grade Can Really Kill You Letter 20140514 District 196 Minnesota

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Published by ncacensorship
We are writing in response to a recent challenge to Sixth Grade Can Really Kill You by Barthe DeClements in school libraries.
The primary ground for removal of the book is the complainant’s objection to the use of the word “retarded,” which, the complaint states, is “not people-first language and is a disrespectful term.”

We strongly urge you to retain the book. While we understand the complainant’s concern, censoring a book because some people find it objectionable would undermine educational principles and raise serious constitutional questions.
We are writing in response to a recent challenge to Sixth Grade Can Really Kill You by Barthe DeClements in school libraries.
The primary ground for removal of the book is the complainant’s objection to the use of the word “retarded,” which, the complaint states, is “not people-first language and is a disrespectful term.”

We strongly urge you to retain the book. While we understand the complainant’s concern, censoring a book because some people find it objectionable would undermine educational principles and raise serious constitutional questions.

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Published by: ncacensorship on May 14, 2014
Copyright:Traditional Copyright: All rights reserved

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05/14/2014

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May13,2014   StevenTroen   District196DirectorofTeachingandLearning   3445153rdStreetWRosemount,MN55068   steven.troen@district196.org   DearMr.Troen, Wearewritinginresponsetoarecentchallengeto   
SixthGradeCanReallyKillYou   
byBartheDeClementsinschoollibrariesTheprimarygroundforremovalofthebookisthecomplainantsobjectiontotheuseofthewordretarded,which,the   complaintstates,isnotpeople-firstlanguageandisadisrespectfulterm.Westronglyurgeyoutoretainthebook.Whilewe   understandthecomplainantsconcern,censoringabookbecausesomepeoplefinditobjectionablewouldundermine   educationalprinciplesandraiseseriousconstitutionalquestions. In   
SixthGradeCanReallyKillYou   
,themaincharacter,Helen,isasixthgraderwhohasmanytalentsbutcan’tkeepupin   reading,nomatterhowhardsheworks.Sheisfacedwiththechoiceoffailingortakingspecialeducationreadingclasses, whichalsomeansfacingridiculefromherfriends.Helendecidestotackleherreadingproblemandtakethespecialedclassdespitethenegativeimplicationsofthe“retardroom.”  Theauthorschoiceoflanguageconfrontstheteasingandcasualcrueltyoftenencounteredbystudentswithlearning   disabilities.Accordingtooneteacherwhopostedareviewofthebookonline,“DeClementsdidagreatjobdepictingHelen's  challengeswithalearningdisabilityasshenavigatessixthgradeandfinallyfindssomeanswersintheend.Thisbookisgreat  forteacherslikemyselfbecauseitallowsustoseetheimpactthe"littlethings"wechoosetodoornottodocanhaveona   student.It'sagreatbookforstudentsbecauseitdepictsHelen'sdecision-makingprocessesandtheramificationsasshe   choosestoutilizethespecialed.roomasaresourcetohelpherread.”  Thisviewwasechoedinotherreadercomments:Thisisawonderfulbook!IamaSpecialEducationClassInstructionalAide. Iamcurrentlyreadingthisbookwithmystudentsandtheyloveit!SincemystudentsareinaResourceClasslikeHelen,they   canreallyrelate.TheyenjoylaughingatthesituationsthatHelengetsherselfintoandtheycanunderstandwithhowshefeels.”  Anothercommenterwouldrecommend[thebook]toanyonewhowantstounderstandhowkidswithLDsmightfeelabout  themselves,andtoanykidswithLDswhoneedanLDheroine.Yeah,it'sfromthe80s,butit'soneofthosebooksthatsurvives  becauseitsprotagonistanditsstoryaresomemorable.”  Withoutquestioningthesincerityofanyonewhoobjectstothebook,theirviewsarenotsharedbyall,andtheyhavenorightto   
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