Hudson High School controversial book in the library
HUDSON, Ohio (WJW) – A book found on the shelves of the Hudson High School library sparks new debate over whether students are exposed to adult content.
Speaking at the Hudson Board of Education meeting on Monday, a parent raised concerns about the book which contains sexually explicit and hate-filled language and images.
“Lawn boy. Anybody? Lawn boy. It’s disgusting, this book is disgusting, ”said the woman, holding up a copy of the book.
The parent, who said she would not give her full name or address after receiving a threatening letter when she spoke at a previous board meeting, challenged the directors of the school to remove the book and find out how it ended up in the library.
“That’s how quickly this stuff, this junk, gets into our kids’ hands, and it doesn’t necessarily fall on you guys, but it does fall on somebody.” Who is going to be held responsible for this? It must stop, ”she said. “It’s not political, it’s about our children.”
The discussion about the book follows an intense debate over the use of a writing journal titled “642 Things to Write About” in a college credit English course offered at Hudson High School through Hiram College.
Topics suggested in the journal included some of a sexual nature and others that explore extreme violence.
At Monday’s board meeting, Hudson Superintendent Phil Herman reminded parents that the district quickly removed the class writing journal after being alerted by parents.
“We appreciate when our students and parents or community members share their concerns or comments with us,” he said.
On Thursday, the superintendent answered questions about the explicit book found in the library, issuing a statement that reads in part:
“I am deeply disturbed by the content that has come to our attention, in particular the overtly sexual drawings. This clearly requires further examination, which is already underway. We will be removing these books from circulation until this process is complete. Additionally, I establish a review of the process we use to add books to our libraries and how these particular books have become a part of our high school library collection. While we want to ensure that we continue to provide our students with a wide range of materials designed to foster knowledge and broaden their worldview, we also want to select materials that clearly contribute to educational or personal growth.
As the debate over what content students can access continues, some Hudson residents wonder how the school board and administrators allowed material to enter the school or why they weren’t aware of their presence.
Others, however, view moral outrage as a political weapon during an election campaign that has led to death threats.
“We can certainly disagree on the program and resolve it as well-meaning adults, but accusing such people of child pornography and grooming was baseless and malicious. It prompted threats of violence and created a state of fear in this community, ”said Marty Bach, longtime teacher at Hudson.
The school district is awaiting the results of an independent investigation commissioned earlier this month to find out how certain documents, including the controversial Hiram College writing diary, have made their way into the high school curriculum.
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