With First Amendment concerns on the rise following the presidential election, last week the Authors Guild joined a number of publishing industry organizations in co-sponsoring a letter to the Sullivan (Tennessee) County School Board. The letter urged the Board, which has been charged with reviewing a seventh-grade history textbook for pro-Islamic “bias,” to bear in mind First Amendment principles during its review. The textbook in question—Pearson’s My World History—was the subject of a formal removal request filed by a parent.
This incident is part of a larger trend to censor lessons on Islam in Tennessee schools, according to the National Coalition Against Censorship (NCAC). The letter, written under the aegis of the NCAC’s “Kids’ Right to Read” project, reminded the Sullivan County School Board that “educating students about Islam does not constitute indoctrination” and that “removing a textbook because it offends the beliefs of some parents raises serious First Amendment concerns.”
Read the full letter below.