Officials Respond to Local Pressure to Remove Books from Bedford County School Libraries | Education

At the December school board meeting on Thursday, school staff explained the process for handling book disputes at public schools in Bedford County.

Called Policy KLB, BCPS ‘long-standing procedure for disputed books allows affected parents to lodge a written or verbal complaint with the library’s media specialist or, if the book is part of classroom use, the ‘teacher. The appropriate party will then work with the family regarding their concerns, and the library media specialist will consult with the school principal and Shawn Trosper, director of program and education with BCPS.

The disputed material will remain in use during the process and, depending on the outcome, may or may not be restricted. A committee consisting of the library media specialist, the school principal, school board office staff, concerned parents and any other appropriate party will meet and make a final decision. If the complainant does not agree with the decision, he can appeal to the superintendent or his designate, and ultimately to the school board.

Only one book can be disputed at a time, according to KLB policy.

One consideration that BCPS staff said should be kept in mind during the book review process was that “parents have the flexibility to set restrictions for their children, but not for all children.” Staff added that “any withdrawal or prohibited access to a book based on an individual’s disagreement with their political, religious or moral point of view is a form of censorship.”

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