First lady Melania Trump announced on Dr. Seuss to help her celebrate National Read a Book Day on Sept. 6.
Then occasions got … complicated.
As the White House had previously announced, a school in each state that had “achieved high standards of excellence” would be receiving a container of 10 books by Dr. Seuss. Achieving “excellence” is a vague benchmark, of course — and one the White House doesn’t define in detail in its press release — but it seemed as though performing well on standardized measuring was a key standard.
In Massachusetts, that clas selected to receive the donated records was Cambridgeport Elementary. The school librarian there, however, wasn’t precisely happy about it.
In a blister open letter to the first lady published under household predicting blog The Horn Book, librarian Liz Phipps Soeiro laid out why she won’t be keeping the books.
Although she said was “honored” by the gift and thanked Trump for the gesticulate, Soeiro pointed out why students in Cambridge — dwelling to Harvard University, and their home communities with significant resources to offer its schools — certainly shouldn’t be the ones countenancing bequeathed volumes from Washington when there are many other class that need the help.
“My students have access to a school library with over nine thousand loudness and a librarian with a graduate degree in library science, ” she wrote. “Meanwhile, academy libraries around the country are being shuttered.”
Soeiro mentioned the Trump administration has exacerbated education inequality by equipping Betsy DeVos — whose programmes tend to favor students in wealthier or privileged domains, like Cambridge, over those in impoverished both rural and urban districts — to run its education department.
“Why not go out of your direction to gift journals to underfunded and underprivileged parishes that continue to be marginalised and reviled by policies put in place by Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos? ” she wrote.
As you can imagine, Soeiro has faced both support and backfire for the letter.
The first lady responded to Soeiro in a statement from her communications squad, indicating the librarian needlessly represented the gift political: “To change the gesticulate of sending young students some journals into something controversial is deplorable, but the First Lady remains committed to her efforts on behalf of children everywhere.”
Many online agreed 😛 TAGEND
This teacher needs a reality check. Dallying politics over children’s diaries is ridiculous.
— Wayne Trendy (@ TrendyNewsBits) September 28, 2017
In her note criticizing Trump, Soeiro too announced Dr. Seuss a “bit of a cliche” and noted his work’s well-documented racist undercurrents — points conservative media impounded and gone harshly.
But Soerico certainly has a group of supporters in her angle very — notably, it seems, countless Cambridge mothers.
CBS Boston reported that countless mommies and fathers picking their adolescents up from clas after the disagreement uncovered agreed with Soerico’s reasons: “That’s the librarian’s sovereignty and I reinforce her decision, ” one pa chimed in. “I conclude the note is actually articulated, productive in its promptings, ” another told the report store.
Whether or not you agree with the librarian’s decided not to repudiate Trump’s gift, one irrefutable top in her word is worth remembering: Public school kids deserve better.
“Cities like Philadelphia, Chicago, and Detroit are suffering through expansion, privatization, and school ‘choice’ with no interest in outcomes of children, their families, their teachers, and their schools, ” Soerico wrote. “Are those girls any less deserving of journals simply because of circumstances beyond their command? “
Of course not. And our education policies should reflect that.