Sat. Dec 2nd, 2023

PORTAGE, MI — Portage Public Schools has removed “Push: A Novel” by Sapphire from the districts library

At a board meeting on December 12th, 2022 a community member requested the book be reviewed by the school, alleging the book was too graphic for students

The citizen said the book is inappropriate because it has a graphic description of a child being molested.

After a review of the book the district decided to remove the novel “Push” from their libraries due to its obscene and pornographic content.  

Before the November, 2022 election, Portage Public Schools went on record with a local reporter from M LIVE and stated that “content that can be considered pornographic does not exist in PPS.”  Which we now know is false. 

A recent study from an advocacy group found that Portage Public Schools libraries contain 319 books that have “questionable” content based on a national rating scale.

Parents concerned about books containing sexualized content being in their child’s school library has become a national movement over the past year. Just like parents here in Portage, parents from around the country have been disgusted and shocked by what they have found in their child’s public school libraries.

As reported in a recent Fox News article Christopher Rufo, an education activist, has spent the last several months closely documenting the battle among parents who are seeking to have more autonomy over the education of their children. From Virginia to Utah to Michigan, Rufo said the pushback by parents fighting for appropriate reading material in school libraries is more of a “common sense” issue than a political one.

“It’s actually not Democrat-Republican anywhere in the country. Most parents are pretty common sense. They want to have a wide diversity of books, covering a range of topics, they want to show respect for everyone in the classroom, regardless of sexual orientation, but these are sexually explicit and pornographic books, often with very graphic depictions of sexual activity,” Rufo said. “This is just not appropriate, and it’s certainly not a book ban to say we don’t want pornography targeting young children in elementary schools.”

“Conservatives need to stand strong with the simple message [that] parents are the ultimate arbiters of the education for their children,” Rufo said. “They should be in power over the schools, over the legislative bodies. This is the heart of our democracy, and we have to make sure that parents can determine what is appropriate and inappropriate regarding their children, especially in the youngest grades.”

Reform to ensure education material is age appropriate was a hot topic during Governor Youngkins election in 2021 to become Virginia’s Governor. His message on education helped him win a blue state that had just voted for Joe Biden by over 10% just the year prior in the 2020 Election. 

Same can be found in Florida Governor Ron Desantis’s recent re-election win in November where he increased his margin of victory by over 19% compared to his win in 2018. Education reform was Governor Ron Desantis’s number one campaign message this past cycle.  

Heading into 2024 it will be wise for local republicans to continue advocating for parents!

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