Blog Archives

Musa Kart Indicted After Lengthy Detention, Could Face 29 Years in Prison

April 7, 2017
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Musa Kart Indicted After Lengthy Detention, Could Face 29 Years in Prison

Five months after Turkish political cartoonist Musa Kart was arrested along with several of his colleagues from Cumhuriyet newspaper on suspicion of supporting Kurdish militants and the Gulenist movement, they finally were formally indicted this week. If convicted, Kart could face up to 29 years in prison. The charges specifically against Kart are “helping an…

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Bradbury Biographer Warns of Dystopian Future Without School Librarians

April 6, 2017
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Bradbury Biographer Warns of Dystopian Future Without School Librarians

Few would disagree that in the current context of rampant misinformation, students in public schools must be trained to seek out reliable facts and assess sources. Nevertheless, every year more and more school librarians–the professionals who teach those exact skills–are cut from their positions across the country. In a recent column for the Chicago Tribune,…

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New Jersey Parents Accuse School District of ‘Islamic Indoctrination’ via Animated Video

April 4, 2017
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New Jersey Parents Accuse School District of ‘Islamic Indoctrination’ via Animated Video

Two parents of public school students in Chatham, New Jersey have hired lawyers to represent them in a fight against what they label “Islamic indoctrination” in a middle school geography unit on world religions. In particular, Libby Hilsenrath and Nancy Gayer object to a brief animated video outlining the Five Pillars of Islam. Hilsenrath also…

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Arizona School District Pulls Kite Runner from Curriculum Mid-School Year

April 3, 2017
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Arizona School District Pulls Kite Runner from Curriculum Mid-School Year

Students at Williams Field High School in Gilbert, Arizona are looking for answers after Khaled Hosseini’s The Kite Runner was abruptly pulled from the curriculum district-wide, just as Honors English 10 classes were to start reading it. Higley Unified School District issued a statement implying that the book had not been through a required approval…

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She Changed Comics: Women in the Underground

March 31, 2017
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She Changed Comics: Women in the Underground

With the rise of the raucous, raunchy, male-dominated Underground Comix scene of the 1960s and ’70s — itself a backlash against the sanitized books that passed Comics Code Authority muster — came another backlash of sorts, from women galvanized by the feminist movement and looking to tell their own stories about heretofore taboo topics, including…

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Alison Bechdel Named Vermont Cartoonist Laureate

March 30, 2017
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Alison Bechdel Named Vermont Cartoonist Laureate

Alison Bechdel, creator of Fun Home and Dykes to Watch Out For, will be honored as Vermont’s new Cartoonist Laureate at a ceremony in the state house next month, followed by a presentation of laurels at the Center for Cartoon Studies in White River Junction. Bechdel is the third cartoonist to fill the role, succeeding…

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School Asks Author to Stop Discussing Her Book Mid-Visit

March 28, 2017
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School Asks Author to Stop Discussing Her Book Mid-Visit

Sadly, the phenomenon of authors being disinvited from previously scheduled school visits because of their writing or opinions is nothing new–in the past few years, it’s happened to Rainbow Rowell, Phil Bildner, and Meg Medina, to name just a few. But recently middle-grade author Barbara Dee found herself in the supremely absurd situation of being…

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Gene Yang Encourages “Reading Without Walls” in New Short Comic

March 27, 2017
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Gene Yang Encourages “Reading Without Walls” in New Short Comic

This weekend, Gene Luen Yang’s “Reading Without Walls” initiative will officially launch in its new permanent incarnation. Originally conceived as Yang’s platform during his term as the Library of Congress’ National Ambassador for Young People’s Literature, the program encourages readers to choose books that touch on experiences different from their own. To illustrate the value…

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NC School District Pulls Jacob’s New Dress from Curriculum After Legislator Complaints

March 24, 2017
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NC School District Pulls Jacob’s New Dress from Curriculum After Legislator Complaints

Under pressure from North Carolina state legislators, Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools this week reversed course on a plan to have all first graders read the picture book Jacob’s New Dress, which centers on a gender-nonconforming boy who wants to wear a dress to school. The book was to be incorporated in an anti-bullying program to ensure the…

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Judge Hears Arguments Over Removal of Student Painting from Capitol

March 22, 2017
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Judge Hears Arguments Over Removal of Student Painting from Capitol

A federal judge heard arguments this week in a lawsuit over the removal of a painting by a St. Louis teen from the hallway of an office building in the U.S. Capitol complex. The painting by David Pulphus on the theme of police violence hung for several months alongside other student art contest winners from…

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