23 Sep

Sexually explicit books have no place in public school libraries and classrooms. Rules and regulations have been passed to protect children from harm and this board has a responsibility to uphold the rules and laws established by the district, state, and nation.

MN statute 617.291 finds that sexually explicit materials are harmful to minors, and it is in the best interest of the minors within the state, that these materials be restricted. Sexually explicit books that are in Bloomington Public Schools should be removed or restricted because they contain obscene and graphic sexual content that is not age-appropriate for minor children and have no educational merit.

According to school policy 904.1, the School Board “governs the distribution of non-curricular materials on school property and at school activities.” The policy states that distribution of materials identified as obscene, indecent, and vulgar are alwaysprohibited. This mirrors MN statute 617.293 that restricts the spread of any printed matter that is harmful to minors.

At the last listening session, the School Board was exposed to the fact that many sexually explicit books in the school library can be found and obtained by minors without restrictions or parental consent. However, this Board knowingly allows harmful material to remain in the schools and has yet to enforce further inspection or inquiry into these materials.

This Board has a duty to fully seek and understand the facts and specifics of this situation. The School Board’s obligation is to ensure the individual district schools abide by the established rules and policies. Sexually explicit books have been deemed harmful to minors and in any public setting need to be restricted from distribution and display. These harmful books are already prohibited per school policy, and the Board must uphold this policy. Do not be distracted from the oppositions’ use of the word “ban” or even some parents desire to allow children to obtain this obscene, indecent, and vulgar material. Sexually explicit books are not permitted to be distributed to minors without restrictions and have as much business being found in school libraries as a cigarette should be available in the school vending machines. If schools knowingly provide sexually explicit material to students, they are condoning them consuming it, and are in direct violation of school policy.

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