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Central Bucks alums weigh in on district’s new library policy

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Several members of the 1970 class of Central Bucks East/West are speaking out against the school district’s controversial library policy.

In an “open letter” to the district’s superintendent, Abe Lucabaugh, a “core group” of the class’s graduates expressed opposition to the policy that provides a path to remove books with “sexual content” and “implied nudity” determined to be “age inappropriate” from school libraries. The policy calls for a group appointed by the superintendent to review books called into question.

“We are deeply disturbed by the July 27, 2022 decision of the Board of the Central Bucks School District to accept its new library materials policy. We think that this new policy is misguided for several reasons and we urge you and the CBSD board to take steps to rescind it,” wrote Murray C. McClellan, a 1970 graduate of Central Bucks East High School, which was the first year Central Bucks established two high schools.

“One of our main objections is that this new library materials policy will do the exact opposite of what you have been reported as saying it is designed to do, that is ‘to give parents a stronger voice with regard to what their children are exposed to at school. This new policy, in fact, takes away a parent’s right to teach their own children how to negotiate a complicated world by giving the right to the parents of other children to object to what all children in the school are exposed to,” wrote McClellan.

Pati Doyle-Weber, a 1970 CB graduate, initiated the small group’s protest after reading about the policy on Twitter. There are eight “core” members, so far, she said. “Not all live in the district now, but all were educated there.”

“I was gob smacked,” said Doyle-Weber, from her home in Sarasota, Fla. “I have always bragged about how tolerant, caring and humane Bucks County was to my fellow Floridians. I consistently say how I was lucky to attend a high quality public high school,” she said.

“Call me chastised and saddened,” said Doyle-Weber, adding, she hopes the letter will alert more Central Bucks alumni to the district’s policy.

McClellan stressed the need for students’ exposure to a diversity of ideas and perspectives. “A school library that only mirrors the background and opinions of parents will not do that,” he said.

“We are very proud of the excellent education we were privileged to receive when we attended Central Bucks,” wrote McClellan. “Please allow those students who will walk through its hallways in the future to have the same opportunity.”


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