DOYLESTOWN, Pa. (WPVI) — The Central Bucks School Board passed a controversial book plan Tuesday night.
The board voted 6-3 in favor of the plan.
The new policy calls for the creation of a committee that would determine what reading material would be appropriate for small children as opposed to high school students.
Superintendent Dr Abram Lucabaugh says the “library materials policy” is designed to give parents a stronger voice in what their children are exposed to at school.
He says it’s not about removing books from schools but about ensuring that any material with explicit or sexual content, in particular, is age-restricted for children who access it.
“The policy focus tonight is rooted in age appropriateness to ensure it’s aligned with our content and program,” Lucabaugh said.
Before the meeting, a demonstration took place against the new policy.
“I want my kids to grow up and be empathetic. I want them to understand different points of view and different ways of life. I don’t want them to be whitewashed,” mother Michelle said Wire.
Opponents say it is a thinly veiled invitation to censorship and will result in some books being banned.
In fact, the American Civil Liberties Union issued a statement regarding the situation saying, “Enforcement of this policy will almost certainly result in unconstitutional censorship. And such censorship is sure to attract federal lawsuits.
Action News spoke to local residents, some of whom say removing books from libraries never leads to any good.
“You can create a committee that says it’s OK and it’s not. That then opens up a whole host of things that can censor things that shouldn’t be,” said Gregory James of the Bucks County.
Daniele Compain of Doylestown says, “I think that’s a bad thing. You shouldn’t censor books. For me, it is against the Constitution.
Others say there’s nothing wrong with a surveillance system, especially when it comes to kids in kindergarten through 4th grade.
“The library is a place where everyone can go and hang out and read and have fun, and I think they should probably be careful what’s going on there. That’s my opinion. No censorship, but just check to see what’s going on there,” said Jim Garvey of Doylestown.
School officials say an oversight committee will be created, which will include many staff members throughout the school district.
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