Stop read-aloud of crude and vulgar book at KRS.

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"The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian" is a book currently being used during the "read-aloud" time in the Keswick Ridge School (KRS) middle school

The book is written by Sherman Alexie and is about a teenage boy growing up on the Spokane Indian Reservations and the struggles he encounters through the First Nations perspective.

This book is controversial, and has faced removal from many libraries and school curricula. It has also faced exclusion from student reading lists and other barriers designed to stop students from accessing the book.

Topics covered by the book which have caused such alarm include: nudity, masturbation, erections, suicide, several deaths, alcoholism, cultural insensitivity, provocative and explicit language, scenes that are sexually explicit or anti-family, and depictions of violence.

While it's important for young people to understand the struggles of many Native Americans today, material of this kind is not something we should expect from our school teachers who are in authority positions over our children. These topics may or may not be new to the students, but they are perpetuating issues to an age group that hasn't the maturity/life experience to deal with them. Worse yet, there is no discussion or follow-up on the book to help the students understand what they're hearing.

One reviewer of this book claimed, "As a Native American, librarian, and a mother, I was appalled of the continuous reference of drinking, language and masturbation in this book."

THEREFORE, we the undersigned family and concerned community members of KRS students, request 1 of 2 outcomes:

  1. That another, more appropriate book be chosen for the read-aloud time, OR
  2. that KRS middle school students not be forced to listen to this book; that every student be given the option of completing alternative class-appropriate work (not just free time to read/work on their own).

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