Contact the school board and request an opportunity to address academic freedom for students, the function of the school library, and the development of curriculum that encourages critical thinking skills among students. Bring copies of your remarks for them to study during deliberations. The secretary of the school board is usually the one who will distribute copies to the other members. The following are suggested remarks:
- Introduce yourself briefly.
- Summarize your attempts to add materials to the school library and provide copies of the letters you sent to the school. Remind them that no attempt was made to eliminate anything already provided in the library. Keep it factual. Avoid personal assessments. Explain that your rationale includes the following:
- The school library is visited by all students and provides an immediate visual impact on a student’s perception of the intellectual tone of a school building.
- School libraries which contain reading materials representing only one side of an issue effectively influence students to embrace pre-determined positions on most scientific, political and social issues.
- A key purpose of schools is to protect the academic freedom of every student by providing opportunity to study without fear of reprisal or limitation.
- The absence of diversity in media resources impedes the development of critical thinking skills which are a significant aspect of quality education.
- A truly enlightened educational environment provides resources and encourages research on a variety of viewpoints regarding major issues which impact society.
- In a civil society, citizens must analyze varying viewpoints objectively and must respect people who hold those viewpoints.
- Curriculums meant to address bullying represent an institutional hypocrisy and become ineffective when a group of people representing any specific point of view is marginalized.
- Therefore, libraries of schools which receive federal or state funding must provide research and reading materials which address all facets of current scientific, political, historical, and civic issues.
Close by thanking the members for their time. Ask that they consider your offer of magazines and newspapers. Indicate that you are looking forward to providing current events material for the students of NAME OF SCHOOL.
Keep a copy of this agenda and request the school board provide a written response to your presentation. If the school district does not accept your offer of adding conservative materials to the public school library, it is time to write a letter to your legislator.