For the second year in a row, the school board rejected Dorothy Allison’s “Bastard Out of Carolina” as suitable reading material for AP English classes. The book is about a girl who is beaten and raped by her stepfather. Trustees said they’re disturbed by the graphic depiction of violence. Hopefully the latest story will be posted online soon. To read a story from earlier this week (before yesterday’s meeting), click here.
Last year, the board voted 3-2 not to accept the book, which was recommended by the district’s secondary schools’ textbook adoption committee. This year, the vote was 4-1. (Trustees Lily Mei, Larry Sweeney, Ivy Wu and Lara York voted not to approve the book; Bryan Gebhardt supported it.) York switched her vote from last year, saying books that had just been reviewed the year before should not return to the board so soon for reconsideration.
“I don’t think it’s productive for the board to have the same conversation over and over,” she said.
The board plans to change its policy so that in the future, books that are denied can’t be brought back for reconsideration for at least two years.