The children's comic book I Am Rosa Parks by Brad Meltzer and Chris Elipolous has been banned by a school board in York, Pennsylvania. It is one of a list of books and other media materials that have been banned after being chosen because they are by or about people of colour, since October 2020. The district's diversity committee had been creating a list to deliver a more inclusive and expansive curriculum, but instead the school board took the list of suggested reading materials and turned it into a list of materials to ban. This included the I Am Rosa Parks comic as well a documentary on the life of James Baldwin to materials from the National Museum of African American History, Malala Yousafzai's autobiography, an episode of Sesame Street, and more. And despite protests from the student community, after news of the ban went public, the school has not changed its mind. The board released a statement last week from Jane Johnson, president of the school board, who claimed that the list was banned because of the content. "The board believes that the fundamental purpose of school is that of core academics, objective education without indoctrination from any political or social agenda," that they will review the list with an aim of "bringing balance to our classrooms" – though they have not done so for a year and that all the banned materials being by or about people of colour is a coincidence. "Concerns were based on the content of the resources, not the author or topic."
Brad Meltzer posted on Facebook that " I know there are plenty of people who would love to send a free copy to teachers and students to protest. Here's a way to do that, thanks to two amazing women in York, who will fight back by putting them in their little free libraries. Buy I AM ROSA PARKS & all the amazing books on the lists Amazon.com or Bookshop.org. to Haybrook Little Free Library, 131 Haybrook Drive, York, PA 17406, USA.