Fremont School Board Bans Controversial Books

Books deemed "great art" were also deeemed too hot to teach in school.

By Chris Roberts
|  Monday, Jul 9, 2012  |  Updated 1:27 PM PDT
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Fremont School Board Bans Controversial Books

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The school library is the place for plays about AIDS and novels about child abuse. But not the classroom.

For the second year in a row, the Fremont School Board has nixed the literature selections of Washington High School English teacher Teri Hu, according to Bay Area News Group.

Last year, Hu wanted her AP English students to read "Angels in America," a Pulitzer Prize-winning play about AIDS, the newspaper reported. This year, she wanted to teach Dorothy Allison's novel "Bastard Out of Carolina," which deals with childhood abuse.

Both selections were kiboshed by the school board for being not of educational value, the newspaper reported. Hu countered, accusing the school board of outright censorship.

Past AP tests have referred to books by the authors of both banned works, the newspaper reported.

School board members say the books are too adult for teenagers, deal with some cultures in a negative light, and can be replaced with other, lighter fare.

Only a select few students take AP English: 29 classes for 12th-graders were offered throughout the district in the past school year, the newspaper reported.

Another English teacher who teaches "Angels in America" called it "great art," the newspaper reported.

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