I am a junior at Douglas High and have been attending Douglas for three years now. In my English class we read two articles from The Record-Courier about a parent who was asking for the book, "Things Fall Apart" to be "reevaluated." But this wasn't the only book in question. "East of Eden" was another book that this parent thought shouldn't be read in sophomore honors English classes because, from what I interpreted from the articles, these books are too depressing.
I personally read all these in my sophomore year even though I wasn't in honors English. "Things Fall Apart" was assigned because we were analyzing the similarities/differences of the Igbo culture and our modern day culture.
I do admit that this book as well as "Lord of the Flies" and "East of Eden" were at times violent and depressing, but I personally did not think much of it. There is no reason for us students to not be exposed to the different characteristics and values of different cultures. We should be learning about this because, if one really thinks about this, our nation is diverse. There are so many religions, cultures, ethnicities, etc. There is suicide, domestic violence, rape, murder, and so many other bad things in our world that we can't just not acknowledge it.
Parents shouldn't shield their children from what is out in the real world. How are we going to be emotionally and psychologically prepared for an unfortunate event if our parents don't show us (at a reasonable age, of course) or talk to us about real world issues, like suicide and violence that this parent was against being taught. Also, this book was assigned for educational purposes. That is why we go to school, for an education. I personally don't believe that criteria that is being taught should be "reevaluated" just because a couple of parents are against it. Yeah, maybe these parents don't agree with the criteria but that should not disable their child and all the other children from learning "violent" criteria.
In history classes we learn about depressing and violent subjects (i.e- Revolutionary War, Civil War, Holocaust, etc) but does that mean that we should refrain from learning/teaching our world and American History? Now maybe this will, or will not mean much, especially coming from a high school "kid," but, the community needs to know the students point of view. I mean we are the ones affected by our community's say on our education directly, along with teachers. In no way am I trying to offend the parent or anybody else, in our community, but this is from a students perspective. Shouldn't we get a say?