Frisco ISD is in the process of reviewing books available to students. Books that may contain sexually explicit or obscene content will be removed. Frisco ISD has over a million titles throughout its 75 campuses.
On May 19, 2022, Frisco Superintendent Mike Waldrip released a message to parents and staff expressing his own concerns about some books in question and explained that Frisco ISD is diligently working to remove any books that are considered obscene. “Over the course of this school year, our librarians and central office library staff have been engaged in a comprehensive review of library collection development guidelines and policies,” Dr. Waldrip wrote.
Frisco ISD uses the Texas Penal Code to determine what is labeled “obscene,” and books that are prohibited would fall under these guidelines. According to Texas Penal Code Section 43.21, obscenity is defined by what the average person may find offensive in regards to sexual acts “taken as a whole, lacks serious literary, artistic, political and scientific value.”
Dr. Waldrip explained that because there are so many books in the district, it will most likely take over a year before reviews are complete. Frisco ISD has removed 10 titles from its bookshelves since February. Some books removed are The Immortalists by Chloe Benjamin, Triangles by Ellen Hopkins, Milk and Honey by Rupi Kaur and several others.
Rep. Jared Patterson has been at the front of this issue and challenged 32 books through “formal or informal processes” in Frisco ISD. “Parents, teachers, and taxpayers should be able to expect a proactive approach toward pulling explicit materials,” Rep. Patterson stated. “This responsibility should not rest on the state representative. Until this happens, I will continue the fight so that our children can learn in an environment free from radically sexual content.”
During a board meeting on June 13, several parents further expressed their concerns about what books their children are reading and called for a “status check on FISD response to the gay, trans and heterosexual pornographic books crisis.” Parents also expressed their frustration by claiming they found 15 explicit books in Frisco and 35 in Prosper on their own.
Frisco ISD planned a $387,000 allowance for four new individuals to assist in the book review process and to help find new books in the future. A feature on the ISD website allows for students and parents to alert the school of possible obscenity or sexually explicit content and answers frequently asked questions.
An earlier version of our story stated six individuals were hired. Frisco ISD has informed us there have been four. We regret the error and the original story has since been updated.