Saturday, July 23, 2005

Dropping The "F" Bomb On Summer Reading

In Wellesley, Massachusetts, a dad had a problem with one of the books that his daughter is required to read during summer vacation from high school:
When Rick Plouffe picked up a copy of a book on his daughter's school reading list, he came across something he didn't expect - pages littered with obscenities.

To his shock, the book on Wellesley High School's required summer reading list contains dozens of vulgarities.

"I got four pages into it and f-bombs started flying all over the place," said Plouffe, whose daughter is a sophomore. "You get a few more pages into it and the language gets even more colorful.''

Despite the book's goal of helping people understand autism, Plouffe said "The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time" is not appropriate for young teens and violates the school's student handbook, which bars students from using "abusive" or "hostile" speech.

The book tells the story of Christopher Boone, a 15-year-old autistic savant. WHS Principal Rena Mirkin defended the book's choice, saying its message overrides the vulgarities. She said the school considered other books, but none were as effective in conveying the realities of autism. "It's not about the language; it's about the issue," she said.

Ploufee said, "I'm sure they can find plenty of books that convey the same message without the use of vulgarity. This is a distraction to conveying the story about autism."
Wellesley is the home of exclusive all-female Wellesley College, the alma mater of Hillary Rodham Clinton. See a listing of reviews of The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time right here.

Since when did summer reading become required?

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