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DD2 Board Votes to Retain CRT Book

DD2 School Libraries to Retain Book "Stamped: Racisim, Anti-Racism and You" by Jason Reynolds and Ibram X. Kendi on Critical Race Theory. After about an hour-long closed session for legal advice on an undisclosed topic, the Board voted 6-1 to keep the book "Stamped" in DD2 school libraries with Ms. Bates opposed.

Members expressed agreement that a school library book did not violate the terms of a South Carolina budget proviso that prohibited the use of funds allocated by the SC Department of Education to school districts for use in instruction, teaching or training on the tenets of Critical Race Theory.

The Board implied that since a library book is not part of any required curriculum or unit of instruction, the terms of the proviso did not apply to it.

Kellie Bates argued that the book was not factually accurate, was not pertinent to the curriculum and therefore was not in compliance with School Board policy.

Justin Farnsworth referred to the effort as a book banning and alluded to George Orwell's book "1984" to describe the negative effects of censorship. Cynthia Powell spoke to how she was able to relate to the book and that minorities need books of this kind in school libraries. Ms. Hughes and Ms. Wimberly did not feel the book violated either the proviso or School Board policy and Evan Guthrie did not comment.

This issue arose from a filed parent administrative complaint that was turned down by a DD2 District Review Committee and then appealed to the School Board. The appeal had been delayed for months due to the need to re-constitute a defunct district review committee which was required under policy.

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