Jacksonville Schools Consider Rejecting Book on Hank Aaron for Elementary Schools

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tags: Florida, censorship, teaching history, critical race theory

Right now, 26 books for grade school students in Duval County are being held for review by the district to determine if they comply with a new Florida law. 

Duval County Public Schools is currently waiting on state guidance before accepting or rejecting those books as part of school curriculum or into school libraries. 

One specific children's book currently under review by the district is about an athlete who was an American hero.

Before becoming the home run king of Major League Baseball, Hank Aaron played minor league baseball in Jacksonville. But a book about that time might not be permitted in Duval County schools.

The book "Henry Aaron's Dream", which was written by Matt Tavares, is about the rise of Hank Aaron from a young boy in the segregated south to a Major League Baseball star.

A significant portion of the book focuses on a young Henry Aaron playing minor league baseball as a 19-year-old in Jacksonville in 1953. But right now, the book is being held for review as Duval Schools reviews the book's full content to determine if it is age-appropriate and compliant with Florida law. The district's full statement regarding review/rejection of books can be found below.

The so-called Stop Woke Law, more formally titled the Individual Freedom Act, was passed by the Florida legislature last year. It prohibits schools from teaching materials about race or sex that could make some people feel “guilt” or “anguish.” (Although, the law is currently being contested in federal court.)

This book notes that Hank Aaron endured discrimination and physical threats in the still segregated era.

Kimberly Allen is the CEO of 904ward and says that restricting exposure to history doesn’t help students learn.

"We are allowing our education system to be politicized to the detriment of not teaching what is absolutely necessary for our students to learn," says Allen. "It's nice to have a role model for what it looks like to overcome that and still be successful in spite of experiencing some of those challenges."


Read entire article at Firstcoast News

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