Banned Books Week has been shining a light on censorship since it was founded in 1982, and the fight for free expression is as urgent as ever.
NCTE is a cosponsor of the week and a long-time member of the Banned Books Week Coalition (BBWC). The BBWC is here to support the community of readers, including students, educators, librarians, and booksellers, in the United States and abroad.
For decades, NCTE has worked with schools and educators on to stand up for intellectual freedom and provide anti-censorship resources. If you are facing a challenge, please consult the NCTE Intellectual Freedom Center to make a report, access resources, or contact NCTE.
Grounded in NCTE’s position statements The Students’ Right to Read and NCTE Beliefs about the Students’ Right to Write, this book focuses on high school English language arts classes, drawing from the work of seven teachers from across the country to illustrate how advocating for students’ rights to read and write can be revolutionary work.
By showcasing their experiences and activities, and positioning NCTE policy statements—The Students’ Right to Read and NCTE Beliefs about the Students’ Right to Write—as foundational guiding documents, Ochoa and her colleagues prove that even in today’s standards-driven environment, authentic reading and writing practices can create literacy-rich middle school classrooms.
Promoting an equitable and inclusive understanding of literacy, Mariana Souto-Manning and her teacher contributors explore how elementary teachers can welcome the voices and languages of their students into their classrooms in their pursuit of reading and writing experiences that showcase children’s skills and practices.
McCarthyism spurred NCTE to take a more active stance against censorship, and in 1953, NCTE’s Committee on Censorship of Teaching Materials published Censorship and Controversy, condemning McCarthy’s tactics and championing freedom of thought. In 1962 NCTE published its seminal intellectual freedom guideline The Students’ Right to Read, leading up to today’s active Intellectual Freedom Center work which supports literacy educators and school librarians as they prepare for and respond to challenges to texts used in classrooms.