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    Conejo School Board Meeting- on core literature list

    Conejo School Board Meeting- on core literature list
    TOTP notice
    Please plan to attend the CVUSD School Board meeting tomorrow,
    Oct. 3rd, which begins promptly at 6:00 p.m.

    Item 11A on Core Literature List.


    Location: 1402 E. Janss Road (Board Room located in the new CVHS), Thousand Oaks 91362
    (Across Janss Road from the Janss Library – in the South building.
    See sign “Conejo Unified School District” on the building.
    Parking lot is adjacent to the building, but it will fill up, so arrive early!)

    To those who were not able to make it to last Monday’s discussion meeting, here is a brief summary by Dr. Amy Chen.  She was shocked when she read Snow Falling on Cedars, required reading for her 11th grade son in a CVUSD school.  Although the uproar over that book thankfully got it retracted from the class list for the time being, she is concerned that it and other controversial books are still on the CVUSD approved book list.

    Monday, Sept. 25 – Brief Summary of Special meeting at CVUSD:

    The English department chairs, teachers from the district, and principal of TOHS were in attendance. The audience spilled into the overflow area. We had a respectable showing although those on the left easily outnumbered us. 

    1) The teachers seem to misunderstand what we are objecting to. They focused their comments on defending their qualifications to teach tough topics and the importance of teaching tough topics. They claim they are prepared to cover difficult themes well. They cite various examples from the classics such as Lord of the Flies, Of Mice and Men, and Night.


    This is very frustrating because we are not opposed to the teaching of any difficult topics through classics such as these. In fact, we support the use of classics to deal with precisely such difficult themes without delving into salacious descriptions as in the books such as Snow Falling on Cedars, Bluest Eye, and The Absolutely true diary of a Part Time Indian. We are only opposed to a few books on the list that contain pornography and excessive profanity.
    2) Some teachers feel their personal and professional integrity are being called into question.  One mentioned we are creating a negative and demoralizing atmosphere. 
    3) Some teachers also cite the problems that may occur with a new opt-out policy. Some support working from the same opt-out policy that we already have. 

    Tuesday, Oct 3rd Board meeting at 6:00 p.m.

    Plan to be there to show support for Board members John Andersen, Sandee Everett, and Michael Dunn’s efforts to turn this ship back around. The superintendent needs to know the pulse of the community before he can be convinced. 
    Therefore it is very important that the Superintendent, Dr. Mark McLaughlin, knows that we are around and will hold him accountable. He honestly doesn’t know how many people support parental rights and removal of controversial books. 
    Our message should be clear: we want to work with teachers on a policy or, better yet, clean up the list.

    Many neighboring districts such as Oak Park do not have these controversial books, so it’s possible to give good reading options for teachers and families, and still be a high performing district. 

    Tomorrow is our chance to let the Superintendent, Board members, and staff know what we support.


    1) I encourage you to speak.
    2) If you prefer not to speak much, I encourage you to deliver a one sentence statement just so they can have on record how much support they have. 

    3) If you prefer not to do either, please fill out a non-speaker card. You can still put down your concerns so the Board can tally your voice. The non-speaker cards will be scanned and sent to all the Board by the next morning.  Let’s make your presence count.


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