BRUNSWICK, NC (WECT) – The Color Purple will remain in the curriculum for West Brunswick High School and also as part of the media collection.
This decision was reached after Brunswick County Commissioner Pat Sykes challenged to have the novel by Alice Walker removed from the school system.
Sykes, who admittedly only partially read the book, said the sexual content and language used in the book is too inappropriate to be taught in schools. Sykes does not currently have children in Brunswick County Schools.
"It is unfortunate that I must take a stand against an education system that has become so tolerant of immoral and profane reading assignments that expose the children to such as The Color Purple and other books that I understand are on the list," Sykes wrote in a letter to the board.
Sykes listed "the immorality and filth of the F word and N word" as reasons for objecting The Color Purple in an official challenge Principal Brock Ahrens received Dec. 4.
Sykes went on to say in the challenge, "You need to be 21 to drink but are provided porn. In this day were we are being sued for using or saying the N word. Look at Paula Dean."
In a letter to the board of education, Sykes said she also understands that Fifty Shades of Grey is also in the library system. School officials say it is not. Sykes declined an interview request Wednesday.
According to policy, the challenge process starts at the school level. Members of the WBHS School Improvement Team and the school's media coordinator met to review the challenge Dec. 10.
All members of the committee read The Color Purple and unanimously determined the material will stay in the curriculum and part of the media collection.
Officials say it is important to remind the Brunswick County community that according to Board of Education Policy 2310: Parental Inspection and Objection to Materials, parents in Brunswick County absolutely retain the final say with regard to their children's exposure to works of literature. Alternate reading assignments are always available at parental request.
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