The mother of a ninth-grade Shakopee High School student says her daughter was sent home from school with a book containing pornographic material.
According to Rachael Lynch, the book was handed out for her ninth-grade student’s Human Geography course.
“The Best We Could Do,” a graphic novel telling the story of a refugee family from Vietnam by Thi Bui, says that it’s for children ages 13 and up. Images of the novel obtained by Alpha News depict topless women. One line in the book reads, “I want to eat your pussy.”
“I was completely appalled at what I was seeing as she showed me this. This type of content should not be assigned to 14 and 15-year-old students,” Lynch told Alpha News.
“I was only made aware that this book was assigned because my daughter brought it to my attention after she came upon a page that included a caption stating, ‘I want to eat your pussy’ along with very graphic photos of female breasts.”
In an email from the teacher in question, he seemed to admit that the book contains sexually-explicit content, writing that he is a newer teacher and is still learning the school’s procedures.
“One of these procedures is permission slips for explicit content. If I choose to use [The Best We Could Do] in future years, I will ensure that students have explicit permission from their parents,” he wrote.
The teacher told Lynch that he had several objectives in choosing the book for his class. He said that the book would help students “identify the global pattern of migrant distribution, explain the differences between push and pull factors of migration and provide examples of economic, political, and environmental push and pull factors, and describe the reasons for and consequences of forced political migration.”
When asked how books are approved for curriculum, the Shakopee school district directed Alpha News to district policy, which states that curriculum must “consider the needs, age, and maturity of students.” There do not appear to be policies prohibiting the use of sexually explicit or pornographic materials in classrooms.
The district told Alpha News that “The Best We Could Do” is no longer part of the curriculum at Shakopee High School.