Burbank Unified School District deciding whether to ban books some parents call harmful

The Burbank Unified School District is in the process of deciding what to do with books some parents call harmful for kids.

Chances are, you've read one or more of these books that parents have raised red flags on.

Among those books include The Cay, Of Mice and Men, The Adventures Huckleberry Finn and Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry.

It's not the first time families have called for a ban on these books. However, this time, a group of parents from Burroughs High School in Burbank are calling the books harmful, especially to African-American students. Plus, parents argue, these books send the wrong message in the era of amplified Black voices.

As the parent of a 10th grader, Carmenita Helligar's effort to get books removed from Burbank United School District's list of acceptable books came out of a conversation with her daughter and niece in the same grade.

Destiny's class included To Kill a Mockingbird, her nice Serena's did not.

"My daughter came to me and was like, 'Mom, I can’t do a Zoom with a book where they're going to use the n-word. I’m not going to be on Zoom and they’re going to be reading and everybody’s looking at my camera to see my facial expression.' She said no," Carmenita Helligar said.

Destiny was reluctant to talk on-camera but said she was not a big fan of the uncomfortable attention.

It's a fight involving many sides. A Burbank High School student Sung-Joo Yoon started a Change.org petition to keep the books in the classroom.

“These books, which have historically served as an introduction to critical race theory for tens of thousands of students in our District, are now at risk," Yoon said.

Burbank Unified Superintendent Matt Hill is in the process of deciding what to do with the books. On Friday, he met with a handpicked committee to help with the decision.

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