Florida school board members concerned about process to ban books

Osceola County school board members will be reading four books that are under consideration to be banned from school libraries. This comes after a book review committee voted to keep them. Board members were concerned the committee's process was not fair.

Colonna said she is furious over a decision made by a book review committee  to retain four books that she believes should be banned.  "We are so upset over the decision that the media specialists did make because they didn’t read the book," said education activist and grandmother Joanne Colonna, "and if they did, then they didn’t interpret it."

The books are Out of Darkness, Me and Earl and the Dying Girl, All Boys Aren’t Blue, and Looking for Alaska.

"You don’t even need to read some of the books. What you do is just look at the pictures – the most vulgar pictures. In Playboy magazine, they don’t have those pictures in the books that are in the library at school."

Media Specialist Camilla Perez said the group of 15 people, including nine school employees, are certified to read the books and decide. "We’ve been accused of all these horrible things when the only thing we have in our hearts and minds is the best interests of our child, children, students," she said.

However, some board members are concerned it wasn’t a fair process.  Julius Melendez said, "They just wanted to board to approve what the committee said without us doing the final evaluation. They didn’t even do the score sheets. They just put what their vote was." 

The board decided to take the books being considered for ban off the agenda till they can all read them and decide later.

"It’s disappointing to see that a certain group of people are able to cause all of this havoc," Perez added.

Board members said they will need the time to read all four books, so no date has been scheduled for this issue on the agenda.