Titles ‘Gender Queer’ and ‘All Boys Aren’t Blue’ to Stay in Circulation in Glenbard Libraries

Emma Pekkarinen, School News Editor

After months of examination the Ad Hoc Committee for Reconsidering Library Materials voted to keep the titles Gender Queer by Maia Kobabe and All Boys Aren’t Blue by George M. Johnson in Glenbard libraries. The principals of Glenbard took this decision in stride and voted to keep the titles in circulation, the final say on the issue. 

On April 11 the Ad Hoc committee met for the last time, according to the Glenbard News email for April 25, to “discuss community emails and the books themselves” after two prior meetings held in March. The committee then voted unanimously to keep the titles in District 87 libraries. 

The Ad Hoc committee also made a recommendation to the principals stating that the titles have educational and social-emotional significance. In response to the allegations that the books contain pornography the recommendation stated that, “We understand that the definition of pornography is materials that are created with the intent to elicit sexual excitement. We do not believe that either of these books contain pornography of any kind.” The committee also maintained that parents had the right to restrict their child’s access to library materials and that the books foster empathy and diversity. 

After the meeting all four Glenbard principals met to make the final decision regarding the titles and review the request made by the Ad Hoc committee. The principals ultimately decided to keep the titles in circulation in Glenbard libraries. 

In the principals’ final report they highlighted their reasons for keeping the books in circulation. Stating that the books were and are not part of the Glenbard curriculum, that parents and guardians still have the right to restrict access to library materials for their students, the numerous awards and honors the books have received as well as being in other libraries in the Dupage County area, as well as the books being selected in accordance with previous held district standards. 

Superintendent David Larson made a note in the Glenbard News email sent out on April 25th that he would be applying the principals’ decision to “any new requests for reconsideration of Gender Queer and All Boys Aren’t Blue for the remainder of this school year and all of next school year.” 

Additionally, while the title Flamer by Mike Cuarto was originally another title involved in this reconsideration request it was only Gender Queer and All Boys Aren’t Blue that were part of the formal request for reconsideration. As summarized in the Principals’ final report, “In November 2022 formal requests for reconsideration of the library books Gender Queer, by Maia Konabe, and All Boys Aren’t Blue, by George M. Johnson, were filed with us, the Glenbard Principals, under Board of Education Policy 6:230 and its supporting administrative procedures.” 

For those wishing to read for themselves the principal’s decision it is linked here: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1kaOiT2zqfcZ-ei2VhmMh65AQXqV3xsr_/view