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January National IF News

Posted By Todd A. Schlechte, Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Intellectual Freedom News

January 14, 2016



·        Hodges Award nominations deadline extended - The Intellectual Freedom Roundtable is now accepting nominations through March 1, 2016.

·        February 14, 2016 Deadline for Read Across America Day free books provided by Literacy Empowerment Foundation.



·        David Levithan – Freedom to Read member and past spokesperson for Banned Books Week. “In a tumultuous time of a teen’s life, David Levithan’s work is a beacon of light and hope. His stories are lead-ins to difficult conversations as well as reminders that the reader is not alone,” said Edwards Committee Chair Valerie D. Davis.

·        Pat Scales wins the ALSC Distinguished Service Award – “This year’s recipient, Pat Scales, is a former middle school and high school librarian who is an independent consultant, author, and active member of ALSC and ALA. Throughout her career, Scales has been a passionate advocate for children’s intellectual freedom. She works to educate librarians, teachers, and parents on how to talk about books and teach life lessons through sharing books.”

·        HP Kids Read – “HP Kids Read promotes academic excellence and defends the role of experts, such as teachers and librarians, to select diverse reading materials that challenge their students to think critically, teach them empathy, and prepare them for the challenges of adulthood. They have done this by collaborating with teachers and advocating for policies at the level of the individual student that prevent a small group of parents from altering the curriculum for all students. “This is the most effective parent group I have ever encountered,” said Barbara Jones, nominator and director of the ALA Office for Intellectual Freedom. “To me, this is the ideal model of parent/student/librarian/teacher/administration collaboration to support the freedom to read. It is not an absolutist position, but one that allows for parents to choose for their own child but not for other children.”

·        Marge Ford – “Maintaining the library collection and ensuring that everyone has free access to diverse books and materials is a task countless librarians routinely perform. But it’s an essential routine that protects a student’s right to read by establishing policies that ensure challenges to materials are dealt with fairly.”



·        The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn; Schools continue to grapple with 'Huckleberry Finn' | Philadelphia Inquirer; The politically correct crowd just got a great American novel banned |New York Post; Here’s Why Banning ‘Huck Finn’ Over The N-Word Sends The Wrong Message | MTV News

·        Nasreen’s Secret School; Eau Claire parents concerned about curriculum | WSBT22; Curriculum questions prompt forum | The Herald – Palladium

·        Borderlife; Novel about Jewish-Palestinian love affair is barred from Israeli curriculum | The Guardian; UPDATE: Jewish-Arab love story can still be taught in schools as part of open curriculum | The Jerusalem Post

·        When I Was the Greatest; Gun On Cover Of Children’s Book Sparks Outrage Among Anti-Violence Parents — But It’s An Anti-Violence Book | Bustle

·        Kuwait pulls out ‘inappropriate’ books from schools | Gulf News

·        Russian Authorities Burn Books Published With Soros Funds | ABC News

·        Update: For Every Child, A Better World; Marshfield Schools Keep Kermit the Frog Book |



·        Global coalition urges governments to reject encryption laws| The Hill

Both ALA and FTRF are signatories / supporters of the “Secure the Internet” campaign

·        Many Americans say they might provide personal information, depending on the deal being offered and the risk they face| Pew Research Center

·        You are not what you read: librarians purge user data to protect privacy | The Guardian

·        Spending bill a win for library funding, loss on cybersecurity | District Dispatch

·        Temporary art installation at library explores 'what it means to be watched' | Lawrence Journal-World

·        Rewriting the Social Contract to Safeguard Student Data Privacy | EdSurge


Around the Web

·        Schools’ PC censorship strangles the free mind | The Times Herald

·        Intellectual Freedom and School Librarians: Looking Back and Looking Ahead | AASL Knowledge Quest

·        Error 451 is the new Ray Bradbury-inspired HTTP code for online censorship | PCWorld

·        Streator parent questions Islamic lesson (editorial)

·        Universities must halt student censorship culture in academics | Evening Express UK

·        LaRue on Taking the Lead at the Office of Intellectual Freedom, Freedom To Read Foundation | Library Journal

·        ALA Information Policy Workshop | American Libraries

·        I Am Jazz: Community Readings | Human Rights Campaign

Tags:  current news  intellectual freedom  kristen pekoll 

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