Glen Ellyn Lifts Ban on "Wallflower" Book

Hadley Junior High School parent complained about the Stephen Chbosky novel because it deals with sex, drugs and homosexuality

Monday, Jun 10, 2013  |  Updated 11:09 PM CDT
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Glen Ellyn Lifts Ban on "Wallflower" Book

School district officials in Glen Ellyn voted 6-1 Monday night to lift a ban on the book, The Perks of Being a Wallflower.

The book was pulled from Hadley Junior High School shelves last month after a parent complained about the Stephen Chbosky novel because its references to sex, drugs and homosexuality.

A public meeting was packed, with students, parents and members of the clergy addressing the District 41 board members.

"In this ultra-connected age, young people face countless challenges and temptations. Books like "perks" help kids to anticipate what they will likely encounter," said Brett Cooper, a teacher at Hadley Junior High School, speaking in support of the book. "Parents may benefit, too, by reading the book, discussing it with their kids and contemplating alternative responses to similarly challenging circumstances."

But others maintained the content was too racy for the young audience and stressed to keep the ban in place.

"Anyone with common sense, after reading even a small excerpt, should be able to determine that this put is simply inappropriate and shouldn't be available in the public school setting. As a parent of four daughters, I'd be completely outraged," said a representative with Illinois Home Educators. "It does nothing to build up a young man's or a young woman's sense of self-worth or foster any sense of decency whatsoever."

Novelist Judy Blume, who has also faced censorship battles, spoke out in favor of the book over the weekend during an appearance at the Printers Row Lit Fest.

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