The Springfield News-Leader reports today that three books are being reconsidered in the Republic School District. Wesley Scroggins, associate professor of business at Missouri State University and concerned parent, wrote an editorial to the newspaper on Sunday warning that “parents need to be cautious” regarding sex education and obscene books in the Republic School System. He points out several issues with the eighth grade sex education curriculum and the book “Slaughterhouse-Five.”
The News-Leader states that Scroggins’ complaints also contend that Republic teaches evolution, covers inappropriate material in sex education classes, and uses textbooks that teach errors about American government and history. Scroggins says further in his editorial that the curriculum is “unacceptable considering that most of the school board members and administrators claim to be Christian. How can Christian men and women expose children to such immorality?”
Wesley Scroggins is a “recently promoted” associated professor of business at Missouri State University of which I am an alumnus from many years ago. On his spotlight page on the university website, Scroggins states “I like to balance my courses with theory and practice.” Further on in his profile it states that Scroggins was the recipient of a futures grant to research the perceptions of entrepreneurs across cultures.
I agree with one local blogger who says she is “ashamed to find out that a professor at MY university was the one causing all of these problems.” The “problems” to which she is referring is the book banning controversy.
If Scroggins was recently given a grant to study different cultures, why is he so intolerant of school teachings that are not necessarily Christian teachings? If he is so adamant about having a Christian education for his children then he should enroll them in a private Christian school. There are several in the area I can recommend.
Another recent case in the Stockton School District leads me to believe that there is an epidemic in this area. The News-Leader reported on September 9, 2010, says that the school board in Stockton upheld a ban of Sherman Alexie’s “The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian.”
The main issue in that case was too much profane language in the book. There are also depictions of sexual acts in the book.
Religion and State in America
Why stop at banning books that teach alternate views of teenage sex or evolution? Will a public school system start to advocate Christian values there is a first amendment of our Constitution that states “Congress shall make no law respecting the establishment of religion.”
In a public school system do we have the right to limit what children may or may not learn? When a professor of a local public university seemingly goes against his ideals of getting a well-rounded education and advocates banning books, what’s next?
If he doesn’t want his children to read a book then does he have the right to enforce his will upon other parents and students by requesting books be banned? No, because we have the right to raise our own children as we see fit.
I, too, am ashamed by Wesley Scroggins’ actions. He should have the option for his own children’s education be separate from those of others in the same school system. One final question: does Mr. Scroggins have tenure?
The Springfield News-Leader and Missouri State University website provided information for this article.