clearn.png
Tuesday July 5th, 2022 2:18AM

Mississippi school board upholds firing over 'New Butt' book

By The Associated Press
Related Articles
  Contact Editor

BYRAM, Miss. (AP) — A Mississippi educator who was fired for reading a children’s book called “I Need a New Butt!” to second graders says he will go to court to try to get his job back.

Toby Price told the Clarion Ledger he received a 12-page order Monday showing the Hinds County School Board had voted 2-1 in late April to uphold the superintendent's decision to fire him in March. He was assistant principal at Gary Road Elementary in the Jackson suburb of Byram.

Price was initially suspended with pay but later fired after reading the book over Zoom. The book, by Dawn McMillan, chronicles a child’s journey to find a new backside. It is illustrated with cartoons that show the character considering an armor-plated butt, a rocket butt and a robot butt.

While Price was appealing, Superintendent Delesicia Martin called the book “inappropriate" because it showed “private areas of the body.”

Price, an educator for two decades, described the book as “silly" and said: “The kids are in on the joke as they read it."

Teachers have been under increased scrutiny nationwide — particularly in Republican-led states — as advocates push book challenges and bans in an attempt to restrict how students are taught certain subjects, particularly around racism, sexuality and gender.

Following his appeal hearing, the school board met April 28 and heard from Price, his attorneys and school district officials. Board members then went into a closed session and with two of the five members abstaining, voted to uphold his firing.

“He does not see the problems associated with a school administrator desensitizing both adult nudity and child nudity by exposing it to children under his care,” the board wrote. “At a minimum, it conditions children to believe all types of actions are nothing to be concerned about — they are just funny. However, these activities are dangerous for children.”

The board said “I Need a New Butt!” showed inappropriate activities such as an adult painting on a child's exposed bottom, an activity that would require a report to the state Department of Human Services for child abuse or neglect, the board wrote.

Price’s attorney listed other books in the school’s library that have similar themes or illustrations, including “Captain Underpants.”

Price posted a short poem on Twitter referring to the superintendent's decision, saying: “Price’s work in education lasted almost twenty years / All it took was one silly book to end his career. / Giving that kind of power to one single person / Will only cause education and teaching to worsen."

Then, he posted an update: “Two voted yes. One voted no. Two said nothing. So Price had to go.”

  • Associated Categories: Associated Press (AP), AP National News, AP Entertainment, AP Business
© Copyright 2022 AccessWDUN.com
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
Alabama shipwreck holds key for kin of enslaved Africans
A crew working on the Alabama coast is assessing the remains of the last slave ship known to have landed in the United States, more than 160 years ago
1:44PM ( 10 minutes ago )
Mississippi school board upholds firing over 'New Butt' book
A Mississippi educator fired for reading a children’s book called “I Need a New Butt!”
1:39PM ( 14 minutes ago )
Louisiana state troopers charged in beating of Black man
Three Louisiana State Police troopers have been charged with simple battery, accused of beating a Black motorist after a chase
1:25PM ( 28 minutes ago )
Associated Press (AP)
Surprise! Justin Timberlake is in 'Candy' with Jessica Biel
Viewers tuning in to Thursday’s episode of “Candy,” starring Jessica Biel, may recognize a familiar face: Biel’s husband Justin Timberlake
8:46AM ( 5 hours ago )
Live updates | Top Russia official warns of war with NATO
A top Russian official says that there is a growing threat of the fighting in Ukraine spilling into a direct conflict between Russia and NATO
5:52AM ( 8 hours ago )
Live updates | Finland in favor of joining NATO
Finland’s president and prime minister say they’re in favor of applying for NATO membership, paving the way for the alliance to expand in response to Russia’s war in Ukraine
3:53AM ( 10 hours ago )
AP Entertainment
EU plan aims to help get wheat from Ukraine to the world
The European Commission is proposing to help Ukraine move its critical grain supplies to parts of the world at risk of food insecurity
12:50PM ( 1 hour ago )
Biden cancels offshore oil lease sales in Gulf Coast, Alaska
The Biden administration says it is canceling three oil and gas lease sales scheduled in the Gulf of Mexico and off the coast of Alaska
12:35PM ( 1 hour ago )
Live updates | UN focuses human rights inquiry in Ukraine
The U.N.’s top human rights body has overwhelmingly passed a resolution calling on its investigators to specifically look into possible rights abuses and violations in northern Ukraine shortly after Russia’s invasion
12:24PM ( 1 hour ago )
AP Business
Alabama shipwreck holds key for kin of enslaved Africans
A crew working on the Alabama coast is assessing the remains of the last slave ship known to have landed in the United States, more than 160 years ago
1:44PM ( 10 minutes ago )
Louisiana state troopers charged in beating of Black man
Three Louisiana State Police troopers have been charged with simple battery, accused of beating a Black motorist after a chase
1:25PM ( 28 minutes ago )
Jan. 6 panel subpoenas McCarthy, four other GOP lawmakers
House investigators said Thursday that they have issued subpoenas to House Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy and four other GOP lawmakers as part of their probe into the violent Jan. 6 insurrection, an extraordinary step that has little precedent and is certain to further inflame partisan tensions over the 2021 attack
1:23PM ( 30 minutes ago )
Iran raises prices of food staples, stirring panic and anger
Iran has abruptly raised prices as much as 300% for a variety of staples like oil, chicken, milk and eggs
1:23PM ( 30 minutes ago )
Parents swap, sell baby formula; Biden to talk to businesses
A shortage of baby formula in the United States is driving parents to swap, sell and offer leftover supplies to each other
1:18PM ( 35 minutes ago )