2 students who helped reverse their high school’s book ban – NPR

NPR’s Michel Martin talks to York, Pa., high school seniors Olivia Pituch and Christina Ellis about helping to reverse their school district’s ban on certain books and films being taught to students.

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

And finally today, we’re going to go to York County, Penn., where there was a debate over an issue that’s been flaring up around the country – a fight over what K-12 students should be taught. In some places, people have locked in on critical race theory, something that isn’t taught in K-12 schools. In others, it’s challenging books taught in advanced courses. In other places, the target even includes books for early readers about civil rights heroes like Martin Luther King Jr. and Rosa Parks. But this fight didn’t end the way they so often have, with ugly public outbursts or books just quietly disappearing from the curricula. This ended differently, and that’s because of the people we rarely hear from – the students. We’re going to talk with two of them in a minute. But first, some background.

In November of last year, the Central York School District in Pennsylvania handed down a ban on teaching certain materials. Teachers and librarians received a list of books, articles and films
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