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SELECTION OF CONTROVERSIAL LEARNING RESOURCES

Policy Number: 
Board File: IJA

The Board, as the elected representative body of the community served by the schools, is responsible for developing and implementing curriculum and adopting learning resources. The established curriculum is the basic standard, and the Board exercises final decision-making authority as to curricular decisions. Within this context, it is the intent of the Board that critical thinking and 21st Century skills be taught and that a balanced approach be used in presenting or using supplementary learning resources that might be considered controversial.

In order to ensure that resources are being used to meet the District-approved guaranteed and viable curriculum, teachers must exercise informed and appropriate professional judgment to select resources that are consistent with this policy and other policies related to the selection and use of learning resources. Within this structure, teachers, with the approval of their building administrator, may use supplementary controversial learning resources that are vital to the attainment of course objectives, provided that no suitable alternative resource is available.

Controversial learning resources include materials or speakers that are not part of the District’s approved learning resources and relate to issues characterized by significant differences of opinion, usually arising from differing values or beliefs and are not necessarily resolvable by reference to accepted facts. Examples of such materials include, but are not limited to, materials that may divide the school community along religious, ethnic, or racial lines. Due consideration should be given to the age and maturity level of the student audience, community standards, the availability of other resources, sound professional judgment, and whether a reasonable teacher would anticipate that use of the supplemental resource might engender complaints from members of the school community. In addition, some materials may be controversial and unacceptable for classroom use because of the manner of their presentation. Examples of such materials include, but are not limited to, materials that depict nudity, sexual conduct, violence, or language that is inappropriate for the age and maturity level of the student audience. If an teacher is in doubt as to whether a particular resource is controversial or unacceptable, he or she shall consult with the building administrator. Controversial learning resources do not include media adopted in accordance with policy IJB.

Complaints regarding the selection of controversial learning resources will be resolved through the process described in District policy KEC and its supporting regulation KEC-R, Public Complaints About Learning Resources.
 

Adopted: February 4, 1998
Revised: April 20, 2004
Revised: May, 2012
 

CROSS REFS.:
KEC, Public Complaints About Learning Resources
IGA, Curriculum Development and Selection of Instructional Materials
IJB, Instructional Use of Film Resources