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Granbury ISD pulls over 125 school library books for review, officials say

The district began removing books from shelves earlier this month.

GRANBURY, Texas — On Thursday, Granbury ISD confirmed it has pulled 130 titles from school libraries in the district to be reviewed by a committee for inappropriate conduct.

The district began removing books from shelves earlier this month. According to a statement sent to WFAA from Granbury ISD, the board of trustees voted to amend district policy to allow for the removal of “materials because they are pervasively vulgar or based solely upon the educational suitability of the resource in question."

The district has not completed WFAA's open records request for a list of titles under review, but a parent in the district took to Twitter to share the list of books he received from the district in response to his request. 

Christopher Tackett also tweeted a photo he said was sent to him by a student of two men with two boxes labeled "Krause's List."

State Rep. Matt Krause is the legislator who sent a list of 850 books to the Texas Education Agency to be removed from school libraries. A vast number of books on the list are about racism, the LGBTQ+ community and gender identity. Gov. Greg Abbott has also backed this effort, writing multiple letters to state education groups and leaders urging them to "protect" students from content he referred to as "pornographic".

RELATED: The push to ban books in Texas schools spreads to public libraries

The list tweeted out by Tackett includes books about the history of the KKK, desegregating schools and equal rights as well as books about the history of Roe v. Wade, the LGBTQ+ community and safe sexual practices. 

"Many books on the list from representative Krause contain helpful information about abortions, sexual education and human rights," a sophomore at Granbury High School said during a school board meeting Monday. "Books that mentioned LGBTQ+ people make up over half the books listed.”

A spokesperson for the district said "it's likely" that "most" of the books that were removed will be returned to the shelves after they are reviewed. In its statement, the district said it will publish a list of any books that will be removed permanently. 

After an initial review, the district has already decided to permanently remove five books. They're young adult fiction books, all written by Abbi Glines. The district said they're overtly sexual and that the librarian who selected them trusted they'd be appropriate for high school students based on their classification without knowing all the details of the books. 

“For those of you who are upset about the removal of the books, I just want to remind you that kids do not hear things, see things or experience things the same way that you and I do as adults," a woman who said she's an educator and mother of two said at Monday's meeting. 

Granbury ISD said a library review committee will conduct a review of the books in question, though it did not specify who will be a part of that committee or how the committee will be selected. 

“The fact that a committee is being formed in the first place is a major issue," a Granbury High School senior said. 

That student also announced at the meeting that she started a petition to stop what she called a book ban, and she said it received more than 600 signatures. She said she's not confident that her classmates will receive education about diverse perspectives at home. 

“I walk through the halls of the high school every day, hearing nothing but slurs and derogatory comments toward the minority groups included in this list," she said. 

Meanwhile, supporters of the move thanked the board for "protecting" students. 

“To many kids this content is shocking," a woman said. "It’s confusing and it’s even disgusting to them, and honestly I feel like it should be to you too."

The district has not shared a timeline for when the review process will be complete.

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