1606 Brady St.
Davenport, IA
563-336-5000

Administrative Regulation 604.10A

INSTRUCTION

Challenge of Instructional Materials

A. Objection by Citizen

Any resident or employee of the school district may raise an objection to instructional materials used in the District’s educational program despite the fact that the materials were selected by qualified personnel following the prescribed procedure and considering the established selection criteria.

  1. Any citizen (or citizens) may register criticism of material with a building principal, media specialist, or teacher.
    1. At that time, the principal and media specialist or teacher shall try to resolve the issue informally. The materials shall remain in use until the challenge is resolved.
    2. The principal and media specialist or teacher shall explain to the complainant the District’s selection procedure, criteria, and qualifications of those persons selecting material.
    3. The principal and media specialist or teacher shall explain to the complainant the particular place the material objected to occupies in the educational program, its intended educational usefulness, and additional information regarding its use, or shall refer the complaining party to someone who can identify and explain the use of the material.
  2. In the event that the person making an objection to material is not satisfied with the initial explanation, the complainant should be referred to the Director of Curriculum and Instruction and the coordinator of the subject area in which the material is used. If, after private counseling, the complainant desires to file a formal complaint, the person to whom the complainant has been referred shall give the complainant a copy of the selection policy and explain the steps to take to file a formal request for reconsideration.

B. Requests for Reconsideration

 

  1. If after proceeding through the above steps, the complainant wishes to file a formal objection to the material, the complainant may do so by submitting a Citizen’s Request for Re-Evaluation of Specific Education Materials Form with the building principal.
    1. To be acted upon, the Request Form must be filled out completely and signed by the complainant.
    2. The building principal shall file the Request Form immediately with the Executive Director of School Support and Instructional Services.
  2. Upon receiving this request form, the Superintendent or designee will acknowledge the request and convene a Reconsideration Committee. Circulation of challenged material shall not be restricted during the reconsideration proceedings.
  3. The Reconsideration Committee
    1. The Reconsideration Committee shall consist of eleven members.
      1. One teacher, designated by the Superintendent or superintendent’s designee,
      2. One principal, designated by the Superintendent or superintendent’s designee,
      3. One media specialist, designated by the Superintendent or superintendent’s designee,
      4. A Director of Curriculum and Instruction assigned by the Executive Director of School Support and Instructional Leadership,
      5. The Executive Director of School Support and Instructional Leadership, who will act as secretary for the committee,
      6. Six citizen members to include:
        1. Three members from the community, including a designated chairperson, appointed by the Superintendent or designee.
        2. Three high school students, one from each high school, to be appointed by their respective student governments, subject to their parents’ approval.
    2. If at any time a committee member is the complainant, challenged materials have been used in a committee member’s class, or a committee member was a participant in selecting the materials challenged, the committee member shall not serve on the committee during the reconsideration of that material. Instead, an alternative committee member shall be designated by the person or group making the original appointment.
  4. The procedure for the first meeting following receipt of the reconsideration request form is as follows:
    1. Distribute copies of the written request form, copies of reputable, professionally prepared reviews of the material, and copies of the challenged material.
    2. Give complainant an opportunity to talk about and expand on the request form.
  5. At the second or subsequent meeting:
    1. Interested persons, including the complainant, shall have opportunity to share their views. The committee may request that individuals with special knowledge be present to give information.
    2. The committee shall decide on one of the following:
      1. Remove the material from the total school environment,
      2. Limit the educational use of the material to specific classroom use or to a specific building(s),
      3. Retain the material for general student use.
  6. A written decision and its justification will be forwarded to the Executive Director of School Support and Instructional Leadership who will notify the complainant and Board of the committee’s decision and reasons for its action.
  7. Appeal Procedure
    1. A complainant who is not satisfied with the decision of the committee may appeal to the Board under the following conditions:
      1. The individual attended the Reconsideration Committee meetings and listened to and participated in the discussions surrounding the work.
      2. The appeal must be received by the Superintendent within 30 days of the committee’s decision.
    2. When a complainant meets the conditions required for appeal, the Board shall conduct a hearing. Notice of the time and place of hearing shall be provided in writing to the complainant and the Reconsideration Committee. After the hearing, the Board will communicate its decision to the complainant and the Reconsideration Committee.
  8. Requests to reconsider materials that have been previously reviewed must receive approval of a majority of the Committee before the materials will again be reconsidered.