Banned penguin book returns to Rochester school libraryby Elizabeth Baier, Minnesota Public Radio
ROCHESTER, Minn. — Dozens of Rochester residents packed a school board meeting Tuesday in support of a children's book that was pulled from an elementary school library last week.
The book is based on the true story of two male penguins who hatch and raise a baby chick.
Rochester school Superintendent Michael Munoz acknowledged that he and two board members failed to follow district policy when they recently decided to pull the book, "And Tango Makes Three," from the shelf at Gibbs Elementary. The book has since been returned to the school library.
Munoz says there needs to be a written request to pull a book from school libraries.
"If the district receives a challenge, the date of the committee meeting will be established and published. According to policy, the committee must set a meeting day within 20 school days of receipt of the request for consideration form. The book has been placed back in the media center is available to students at this time," he said.
Nora Dooley, chair of Olmsted County's Human Rights Commission, said library books should reflect the diversity of the schools.
"I would hope that when the Rochester Public Schools claims that they support all students, regardless of gender, sexual orientation, religious, ethnic, political and cultural values, that they do so by having books that represent them in the libraries," she said.
The full board will review any formal requests to pull the book at its April 10 meeting, if an appeal is filed.