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Rainbow Boys is back on NY HS reading list!


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Last summer we reported, a parent's complaint had led to the removal of a gay-themed book from a Rochester-area high school's summer reading list.

Well, now it's back on the list.

Released in 2001, "Rainbow Boys" by Alex Sanchez is an award-winning novel about gay teen life. It won the International Reading Association's 2003 Young Adults' Choice award, and was selected by the American Library Association as a Best Book for Young Adults.

Students are required to read at least two books over the summer and write reports due at the start of the next school year. Critics claimed it had been removed because of its gay content.

District officials, however, said the book was only temporarily removed while they reviewed the process used to select books for the list.

Webster Superintendent Adele Bovard said a committee reviewed "Rainbow Boys" and had returned it to the list.

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Excellent news!

From my point of view, this is the best possible result. A complaint was made. There was immediate action (the book was removed) and a review was done. As a result of the review, the complaint was not upheld and the book was returned. It should mean that any further complaints would have to overcome a higher hurdle before they will be actioned.

It is always a hard call to make -- if a complaint is made, do you investigate first, or take action first? In this case, they took action first. In any area involving sexuality, I would tend to say that this is correct. Just think of all the harm that was done because organisations didn't take action when there were accusations of child abuse....

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