"1984" makes the grade at Rigby High School

Classic novel causing controversy

RIGBY, Idaho (KIFI/KIDK) - UPDATE:    Wednesday  9-27-17

The Jefferson School District and Rigby High School have decided not to ban the George Orwell novel "1984" from classroom study.

In a news release posted on the district's website, Superintendent Lisa Sherick said, "We take parent concerns seriously and have a policy in place to identify options in rare circumstances when a parent objects to specific classroom materials."

According to the release, teachers and administrators ultimately determined the novel supported content standards for the district's senior level government course.

Books that had been collected from students were returned to students and teachers were told to continue with instruction.

The full release is below:




One classic novel is causing controversy at a local school. Students at Rigby High School say the book "1984" was pulled from their curriculum.

The school district says they have not required the book to be pulled. The superintendent says they received parent concerns regarding graphic content in the book, and they are currently offering an alternate assignment for students who request it.

Some students are saying, that's not the case.

"We already started reading the book, and they say we're not going to be reading it anymore almost in the middle of the trimester. So yeah, it's disrupted our learning. It's made a lot of people angry," says Sydni Black, senior at Rigby High School.

This isn't the first time the book has been challenged. According to Mid-Continent Public Library's website, it is the fifth most challenged book. It was also banned and burned in the Soviet Union under Stalin.

Banned Book Week is next week. It's an annual awareness campaign that draws attention to banned and challenged books.

Other popular banned or challenged books include:

  • The Great Gatsby, by F. Scott Fitzgerald
  • The Catcher in the Rye, by J.D. Salinger
  • The Grapes of Wrath, by John Steinbeck
  • To Kill a Mockingbird, by Harper Lee
  • The Color Purple, by Alice Walker
  • Brave New World, by Aldous Huxley
  • Animal Farm, by George Orwell
  • The Sun Also Rises, by Ernest Hemingway
  • As I Lay Dying, by William Faulkner
  • A Farewell to Arms, by Ernest Hemingway

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