A Crawford County school district voted on a plan that will allow them to perform a ban on library books that they deem obscene or inappropriate. Penncrest School District has been debating this very topic for over a year now, and tonight it came to a head.
A new policy has been passed by the Penncrest School District. The policy is said to “prohibit any material with explicitly written, visual or visually implied depictions of sexual acts or simulations of such acts, as well as visual depictions of nudity with the exception of anatomical diagrams and classical works of art.”
Nearly 100 people showed out to the Penncrest School Board’s work study session Monday night. Roughly just as many came once again for Thursday night’s meeting.
The policy of contention was introduced on Dec. 8, 2022 and has drawn crowds of community members ever since.
“For the past couple years it’s been very divided. It feels like there’s only a few students up here speaking about this policy, speaking about what’s going on. Most of the parents have been very vocal,” Lawrynn Edwards, a Saegertown student.
Supporters of the ban say that this is about protecting young learners. While those opposed, see it as an attack on First Amendment rights.
“This is not book banning, this is not censorship. This is implementing a new book selection policy for your district,” said one attendee.
“We send our kids here, these parents send their kids to our schools with the full expectation that they’ll be protected and cared for while they’re here,” another attendee claimed.
Another concern of those opposed say the policy say that it directly attacks those who are a part of the LGBT+ community. Removing books that touch on sexuality.
“I want to, as a school board, use those resources. The teachers, the families, and most importantly you need to hear from the students,” stated another attendee.
“I feel like we could be addressing so many different problems rather than censoring library materials that we barely have access to in the first place.” Lawrynn Edwards, Saegertown student
Some in opposition are threatening the district with the proposition of a lawsuit regarding the recently passed policy.