In a culture of diverse thought and free speech, it’s no surprise that the content of our school libraries has become a hot-button issue across the country. Texas House Bill 900, which prohibits schools from purchasing books that are “sexually explicit, pervasively vulgar or educationally unsuitable,” has caused schools, libraries, and districts to make sweeping changes to their reading, and spark many heated discussions that are far from over.
With childhood literacy, parental choice, and free speech at the center of the issue, neutral bodies are the crucial pillar on which we can build a solution that suits the needs of all parties.
- Parents undoubtedly need both visibility and the power to make decisions in the material their children consume.
- Administrators face a monumental task in meeting changing legislative requirements, addressing parental concerns, and driving learning outcomes, often with limited resources.
- Librarians need the right tools and up-to-date information to manage the content of their libraries and make the best recommendations for each student.
- Teachers need insight into every student’s literary journey to provide material and curriculum that supports continued learning.
- Above all else, students need our best as we work together towards a system that sparks joy in reading and a lifelong passion for books.
For BookmarkED, that means bridging the gap between education, free speech, and parental rights, to create personalized library experiences and ensuring compliance with new state laws.
Our technology platform utilizes fact-based data to share book details, provide alternative content recommendations, and tailor parent engagement questions. Our system is built on real-time insights into library material, the latest legislation, and each student’s reading journey. We’re already working in school districts across Texas and soon will expand nationwide to put the power of choice into the hands of parents, protecting their right to make decisions for their children instead of banning material altogether.
Imagine a world where young minds are excited to explore their interests by engaging with literature that supports their curriculum at the same time. We can create a system that empowers young minds to expand their horizons through books, but only with neutral bodies, working together for the love of reading.