May 5, 2022
It has been brought to our attention by a parent that Lake Highland has most recently removed the children’s classic and Newberry Medal winner, Strawberry Girl from the fourth-grade curriculum for being deemed “offensive.” Here is an online review of the book:
“Here's a great way to keep history alive for middle-schoolers. Lois Lenski wrote about ordinary country children, usually in agricultural occupations. Her STRAWBERRY GIRL lives in Florida and has to contend with rival families struggling to bring in the seasonal strawberry crop. While the time (ca. 1940) has now gone by, this is such a worthwhile document of Florida history that it is still in print and widely read in the Sunshine State. Perhaps your kids will enjoy it too!”
Here are a few of our questions that parents might want to ask the school: What is the standard by which the school is making those decisions? What books have they removed from the classroom and what books have they added? What books have been removed from the library and what books have they added in the last two years? Since parents are not able to view the detail of each class course curriculum or have online access to the library how would a parent know? They wouldn’t.
As we disclosed on the website the new DEI Director has been given the authority and power to initiate program and curriculum changes at all schools, lower, middle and upper schools. What qualifications and training does the DEI Director have and what is the position job description?
A larger question is why the school felt the need for a Director of DEI in the first place. We have a diverse student body, have always had multiple programs and classes to satisfy a range of student needs and interests and have worked hard to provide an atmosphere of love, concern and mutual respect, per our Mission Statement.
Lake Highland, thus far, has ignored anyone that has questioned their new direction so new information regarding changes that like-minded parents should know and understand needs to be shared between parents. Let us know and we will help you do that.