EACS parents asks school board to ban ‘The Bluest Eye’

Published: Mar. 15, 2023 at 6:15 PM EDT
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FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WPTA) - A parent is asking East Allen County Schools to take a book off a reading list. Other people have tried to add ‘The Bluest Eye’ to the list of banned books in schools in several states.

The book centers around an 11-year-old Black girl who faces sexual abuse by her father. It deals with race and has a detailed depiction of rape.

“When I read it I was blown away that this was not only available for one, but a required reading,” Breanna Bohde said.

Bohde has three children enrolled in East Allen County schools, including a junior at New Haven Junior-Senior High School. She’s worried about a book that some senior students were assigned to read.

“Despite what they’ve already been exposed to, what their parents chose to expose them to, what they’ve seen on the internet or TV, It is not the job of public educators to this,” Bohde said.

Bohde says the students received a copy of a letter for parents to sign if they didn’t want to read the book. The letter says the book deals with sensitive topics of an adult nature, such as child molestation, and racism. Parents were given the option for students to study an alternate book.

Last Thursday, Bohde spoke up at the school board meeting. Meanwhile, the ACLU says this is a First amendment issue.

“There’s a bill at the state level -- Senate bill 12 -- that would seek to ban books in schools and libraries,” ACLU’S Katie Blair said. “That (bill) should go away. This is starting to infringe on people’s first amendment rights of expression.”

As for Bohde, she hopes district leaders will take this book out of school.

“I am hoping for a bigger conversation, because this isn’t the only book and I’m not the first one to come forward,” Bohde said.

We also talked with school board president Tim Hines. He says when a parent complains about a book, it’s then sent to a committee made up of teachers, administrators and parents. The group will then decide whether the book should be pulled.

We also reached out to a district spokesperson for details, but have not yet heard back.