Iowa’s extensive ban on Captain Underpants.

  • An investigation by the Des Moines Register revealed that close to 1,000 distinct titles were pulled from Iowa public schools.
  • Popular books like “To Kill a Mockingbird” and “1984” were among those that were removed.
  • Despite parts of Senate File 496 being under injunction, around 2,000 books remain off the shelves.

Part of an ongoing series within the Des Moines Register’s Iowa’s Book Ban Battle project.

During last autumn, Mari Butler Abry, a teacher-librarian at Perry Community School District, was involved in the arduous task of evaluating thousands of books to comply with Iowa’s new education law prohibiting sexual content in schools.

She and fellow school officials sifted through lists from other schools, read book synopses, and even utilized ChatGPT to identify which of the district’s over 20,000 books needed removal.

The time spent on this process, from research to meetings to assisting teachers, was substantial.

More:Authors like John Green, Toni Morrison, Jodi Picoult, and Colleen Hoover top the list of most banned authors in Iowa

“We determined that physically examining all the books in the library was not our responsibility,” Butler Abry mentioned. “There simply wasn’t enough time for that.”

Perry ultimately pulled just three books due to Senate File 496, the new law mandating age-appropriate content and restricting books depicting sex acts in schools.

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