Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Golden Compass defended by ALA

ALA President Loriene Roy responds to attempts to remove
"The Golden Compass" from library shelves

CHICAGO - The following is a statement issued by American Library Association President Loriene Roy regarding efforts to remove "The Golden Compass" from libraries and schools.

"This week, the movie, ‘The Golden Compass,’ based on the first book in Philip Pullman's fantasy trilogy entitled ‘His Dark Materials,’ will debut in theatres across the United States. The movie has triggered a boycott campaign sponsored by conservative religious organizations that believe the movie and the books are an attack on Christianity and the Catholic Church. The groups are urging parents not to see the movie or purchase the books.

"The call to boycott the filmed version of ‘The Golden Compass’ has inspired a parallel effort to remove the novel and its companion volumes from libraries and schools. Much like efforts to ban the Harry Potter books, fear and misinformation are driving the effort to deprive students and library users access to Pullman's critically praised books, which are recommended by both religious and secular critics.

"It is one thing to disagree with the content of a book or the viewpoint of an author; it is quite another thing to block access to that material because of that disagreement. Removing a book from a school or library because the author is an atheist, or because a religious group disagrees with the book's viewpoint, is censorship that runs counter to our most cherished freedoms and our history as a nation that celebrates and protects religious diversity.

"We encourage librarians, teachers and parents to resist the call to censorship. Censorship results in the opposite of true education and learning. Young people will only develop the skills they need to analyze information and make choices among a wide variety of competing sources if they are permitted to read books and explore ideas under the guidance of caring adults.

"We realize, of course, that not every book is for everyone. Parents know their children best and should guide their children’s reading. If parents think a particular book is not suitable for their child, they should guide their child to other books. But they should not impose their beliefs on other people’s children.

"By resisting the call to censor and boycott ‘The Golden Compass,’ we send the message to young people that in this country they have the right to choose what they will read and that they will be expected to develop the ability to think critically about what they read, rather than allowing others to do their thinking for them."

Note: Always check that your school or public library has a Materials Selectiion Policy when faced with censorship issues. Follow the procedures outlined in the policy. See this link for more information http://www.ala.org/ala/oif/challengesupport/dealing/dealingconcerns.htm

Monday, December 03, 2007

Essay Contest for 11-14 year olds

The Contributions of Martin Luther King, Jr.Essay Contest 2007/8 GuidelinesAwards
First Prize -$300.00 bookstore gift certificate
Second Prize -$200.00 bookstore gift certificate
Third Prize -$100.00 bookstore gift certificate

Entrant must be 11-14 years old and have permission of parent or legal guardian.

Essay Topic
The essay must answer the question, " What Would Martin Luther King, Jr. Say is the Main Problem Facing Young People Today and How Would He Deal with It?"

Judging Criteria
The essays will be read and ranked by a minimum of 3 judges using the following criteria:
1) thoughtfulness, 2) vocabulary and style, 3) grammar, punctuation, and spelling,
4) clarity, and 5) neatness

Essay Format
The essay must be between 250 and 500 words.
Typewritten and double spaced.
Entrant’s name should not appear on essay.

Submission of Materials
Please submit three copies of the essay, and a cover sheet that includes the entrant’s full name, complete address, phone number, and the parent’s or guardian’s name and signature granting the child permission to enter the contest. If the essay is submitted as part of a school assignment, the name of the school and the name of the teacher who assigned the essay and should be included.
All entries become the property of LaMar Educational Enterprises, LLC.

Contest Postmark Deadline
Entries must be postmarked on or before Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, January 16th, 2008.

Essays of entrants who do not meet or adhere to the contest guidelines will not be considered.

Mail Essay and Cover Sheet To:
C/o LaMar Educational Enterprises, LLC.
41 Watchung Plaza, #192
Montclair, NJ 07042

Notification Date
Winners will be notified by February 12th, 2008

For More Information
Contact Dr. Ansley W. LaMar at 973 485 6591 (out of town call toll free 1 877-254-1287).

NEWARK Schools Job Fair-12/13/07


Check this out:


WHEN: Thursday, December 13, 3007
3:00 PM-- 6:00 PM

321 Bergen Street
Newark, New Jersey 07102

Seeking candidates in the following disciplines:

Bilingual Education--Elementary/Secondary
Educational Media Specialist--Elementary/Secondary
Learning Disabilities Teacher/Consultant
Physical Education--Elementary/Secondary
School Psychologist
Special Education--Elementary/Secopndary
Speech Language Specialist

More information available on the website: