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Northview Public Schools to keep 8 protested books accessible to students

Northview Public Schools
Posted at 9:38 AM, Dec 22, 2023
and last updated 2023-12-22 09:38:33-05

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — Northview Public Schools has denied a request to ban several books from the school library.

The complaint was filed on September 18, alleging the titles contained sexually explicit material.

None of the books are required for classes, though the district says they are a part of the student reading section and noted they discuss sensitive topics like racism, sexual abuse by a parent/guardian, and issues faced by the LGBTQ+ community.

Superintendent, Christina Hinds, penned a letter to families Thursday advising the committee tasked with investigating the claims had completed their evaluation.

“The decision concluded that none of the eight books meet the definition of sexually explicit material when read in their entirety and considered as a whole, nor do they violate Michigan Revised School Code,” the letter announced.

In response to our inquiry about the denial, the district told FOX 17 its investigation and communications about the complaint are part of their efforts to maintain a strong partnership with the community.

“As part of this commitment, the Board of Education has thoughtfully established policies, guidelines, and procedures designed to review instructional materials across the District,” the statement read. “Through the book review committee’s thorough work, the decision has been issued to keep the books accessible to students as they are shelved now and the petitioner’s request has been denied.”

They were not able to share more details on the complaint as the petitioner has 30 business days to file a written appeal.

The next Northview Public School Board of Education (BoE) meeting is set for January 9 at 6 p.m. according to the BoE calendar, though a notice was posted on the school’s homepage announcing a regular meeting will be held on January 8 at the same time.

You can find a list of the books reviewed in our original coverage of this situation.

Future developments will be published on air, online, and in the FOX 17 app as they are confirmed.