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PostPosted: Wed Jun 29, 2011 9:10 pm 
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...tell them they can't take out certain books unless they have a letter of permission from their parents! :?

Seriously though - I haven't read the book concerned, so can anyone enlighten me as to what is contained in Northern Lights by Phillip Pullmann that might be unsuitable? I haven't sent the letter in yet. I've never known DS so keen to get started on a book! :lol:

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PostPosted: Wed Jun 29, 2011 9:21 pm 
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You are joking, aren't you? Are you writing from the buckle of the bible belt?

Presumably this is a church school and/or is experiencing entryism from nutters? Pullman's an atheist, and the parents who a few years ago were complaining about the Satanism of Harry Potter (without troubling themselves to read it, as they find that difficult without their lips moving and Rowling's books are a bit long) have moved onto the atheism in Pullman (again, without bothering to read the books, what with the lips moving problem, relying instead on what they've read on nutter blogs).

Find out why the problem's arisen. It's likely this isn't the only piece of stupidity the parent in question will have bullied the school into, or the only piece of pandering a particularly spineless head has started on, so get ready for fun.


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 29, 2011 9:25 pm 
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Maybe it's because some people don't approve of it? It's quite anti religion. I thought it was fantastic and have insisted on my kids reading it. Actually DC3 hasn't but he's only 9. He was looking for something new to read earlier on....


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 29, 2011 9:26 pm 
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Sorry cross-post.


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 29, 2011 9:31 pm 
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I think most parents would be delighted if their child was willing, able and keen to read ' Northern Lights' at 10. Your son maybe disappointed though as I can't re-call anything I would consider 'unsuitable' about it :lol: (but then, that might be just me, as I am rather liberal when it comes to placing reading restrictions on literature)


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 29, 2011 9:39 pm 
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Thanks for feedback. I didn't know anything about the plot or content of the book but had heard about its atheist approach, and I suspected this might be at the root of the problem as the school is CoE. However, as far as I'm concerned, it's important for children to encounter a variety of opinions so that they can learn to respect different points of view and make up their own minds in due course. I'll be on the phone in the morning!

Or perhaps it really is a ruse by the school to reel in the reluctant readers... :lol:

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PostPosted: Thu Jun 30, 2011 7:22 am 
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When I worked in a school library we had age restrictions on a lot of our books and parents would have to provide written agreement for most things which were thought to contain 'adult themes'. That included Pullman and Rowling books - not because of religious concerns but because they are quite scary! The school just wanted to cover their backs in the event of parents coming in and complaining.

If the school didn't want the children to read Phillip Pullman - they wouldn't have it on the shelf.

I do think it's a great tactic to get kids keen to read though. When I was 9 or 10 I read a lot of "Chalet School" books (dreadful tripe - makes Enid Blyton look racy). In one book a girl is caught hiding in a cupboard reading an 'unsuitable book' ('Forever Amber' - shocking in the '40s apparently)- I was straight off to the library to find it and read it cover to cover within the day. :oops:


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 30, 2011 7:37 am 
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Quote:
If the school didn't want the children to read Phillip Pullman - they wouldn't have it on the shelf.


tend to agree. I work in a Catholic school and they have no problem with Northern Lights or Harry Potter. Maybe they feel that some parents would not be happy. The anti religion bit is not obvious , a bit like The Lion , The Witch and The Wardrobe and Animal Farm they can be read on two levels. Northern Lights is a fantastic story, I loved it..it is a bit sad and scary, but good books often are, you get swept into the story


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 30, 2011 7:40 am 
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push-pull-mum wrote:
When I worked in a school library we had age restrictions on a lot of our books and parents would have to provide written agreement for most things which were thought to contain 'adult themes'. That included Pullman and Rowling books - not because of religious concerns but because they are quite scary!



Oh, I bet. Could you give some examples of other books that had similar restrictions on them? Did you, for example, age mark The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe?


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 30, 2011 8:25 am 
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tokyonambu wrote:
push-pull-mum wrote:
When I worked in a school library we had age restrictions on a lot of our books and parents would have to provide written agreement for most things which were thought to contain 'adult themes'. That included Pullman and Rowling books - not because of religious concerns but because they are quite scary!



Oh, I bet. Could you give some examples of other books that had similar restrictions on them? Did you, for example, age mark The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe?

You had to be 9 to read Narnia (same age as the first 2 Potters) - I don't remember anyone asking for Narnia earlier - we had a lot of requests for Potter.
I do recall having to have agreement letters for Michael Morpurgo and Jacqueline Wilson - and 1 boy wanting us to buy a copy of "The Cider House Rules."


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