Amanda Gorman’s Inauguration Poem Restricted by Florida School
Other contested works were “The ABCs of Black History” by Rio Cortez, “Cuban Kids” by George Ancona, “Love to Langston” by Tony Medina and “Countries in the News: Cuba” by Kieran Walsh. Reasons given for opposing other work include “indoctrination” and critical race theory, a university-level academic framework for understanding racism in the United States that focuses primarily on institutions and systems.
A committee of school representatives, made up of teachers, administrators, a guidance counselor and a media specialist from the library, decided that “Country in the News: Cuba” could remain in the rays. Other titles, like Ms. Gorman’s poem, have been moved to shelves for middle schoolers.
On Wednesday morning, Miami-Dade County Mayor Daniella Levine Cava invited Ms. Gorman to give a reading of the poem in the county.
“Your poem has inspired our young people to become active participants in their government and to help shape the future”, Ms. Levine Cava, a Democrat, said on Twitter.
Florida has become the center of a rapidly escalating effort to ban books from schools across the United States. Last year, the state enacted three laws that target, at least in part, reading or educational materials.
PEN America, a free speech organization, and Penguin Random House, the nation’s largest book publisher, filed a federal lawsuit this month accusing Florida’s Escambia County School District of violating the first amendment by removing or restricting certain types of books from its libraries.
Nationally, efforts to ban books are increasingly being led by elected officials or activist groups, according to a PEN report published in April. The report found that of the nearly 1,500 book takedowns it tracked in the last six months of 2022, 74% were linked to organized efforts by militant groups and politicians, or new laws. that determine what books can be in schools.