Education

Update: Sexy Words Headed Back to School Shelves

By Dakarai I. Aarons — January 27, 2010 1 min read

The Menifee Union School District is reversing course and sending Merriam-Webster dictionaries back to its 4th and 5th grade classrooms.

As I wrote on Monday, the 9,000-student school district found itself making headlines around the world after it removed the dictionaries from an elementary school last week in response to a parent complaint that students had come across the definition of “oral sex” in the dictionary.

Parents will now have the option to decide if their students can use these dictionaries, The (Riverside, Calif.) Press-Enterprise reports.

You can read the district’s full statement here, in which it said district administrators were only following board policy in creating a committee to study the issue, something some community members, including school board members, had called an overreaction last week.

If parents object to their students using the dictionaries, which were bought for advanced readers, a set of children’s dictionaries are also in the classroom for student use.

You can read a snarkier take on Webster-gate over on Mike Klonsky’s blog, where he’d asked readers to help the district look for potentially naughty words and phrases.

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A version of this news article first appeared in the District Dossier blog.