Ottumwa Schools Suspends Controversial Book


The Ottumwa Community School District has suspended a novel due to community concerns about its content.

The district says it was informally notified of the controversial content in the book The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian on Thursday. A community member voiced concerns about the book in a Thursday Facebook post that has been deleted.

According to Ottumwa Schools, the book was recommended and selected as part of the 7th grade English Language Arts unit. StudySync is the board-approved curriculum resource purchased in 2017-18. The novel was recommended within this resource to further enhance the literacy standards.

The district has suspended the use of the book immediately. The material will be reviewed as per Board Policy 605.-1R. The district has in place a reconsideration committee that’s Board approved that includes representatives of parents, community members, teachers, and administration. Ottumwa Schools plans on initiating this review process immediately. 

Prior to further unit studies, parents and students will be notified of the novels selected for study and given the opportunity to opt out and have alternative material.

(image from Wikipedia)

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