How Dare Newark School District Ban Palestine Book! Community Expresses Outrage at Board Meeting

Updated January 27, 2024 with report from Palestine reading advocates participation in School Board meeting to oppose the Newark book ban

The wave of repression that has targeted students across NJ, has not spared the working class and overwhelmingly Black and Latino Newark students as Newark School District has succumbed to pressure to ban a Palestinian book – it almost seems as if the cultural elimination aspect of the genocide has come to NJ.

This report unfortunately is pay-walled – there are likely other reports as well and better links will be provided.

The banning of the book by Newark School District has led to outcry of the community at the district’s January 25, 2024 meeting as reported by this Tapinto Newark report.  According to one of the organizers in attendance, about two dozen attended to protest the book ban and about a dozen spoke up at the meeting.

The elected board members are stating that the Newark District pulled the book unilaterally without their approval or even their input.  From the Tapinto article.

A series of people expressed their opposition to the book’s removal including, Whitney Strub, a history professor at Rutgers University-Newark, who was part of a group of educators from Rutgers Faculty for Justice in Palestine in attendance.  Strub said the book details a boy who is humiliated by Israeli soldiers, whose family’s property is stolen by settlers in the West Bank and who is shot at by settlers.  “It’s a beautiful, powerful heartbreaking book, and I think it’s upsetting to see you ban it,” said Strub, 44, a resident of Newark’s Ironbound.

Here are some of the people that took a stand and used their voice to defend the right to read, to oppose censorship, to oppose book banning and to defend Palestinian people and literature.

Here is a video from the meeting from the Teaching While Muslim Insta account:

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Meanwhile this instructive set of graphics explains the situation and calls us to action – slide show also provided by Teaching While Muslim .

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