Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Wisconsin School Textbook Presents Obama to Students

The excerpt of Obama’s 1995 book “Dreams from My Father: A Story of Race and Inheritance,” is included in a unit titled “Our Place in the World.” The section about Obama also includes an excerpt from his keynote speech at the 2004 Democratic National Convention.

-- From "Textbook mentioning Obama angers parent" by Paul Sloth, Journal Times (Racine) 10/14/08

RACINE — An eighth-grade literature textbook that includes an excerpt from a book by Sen. Barack Obama has angered at least one Racine Unified parent and rankled a number of bloggers who contend that the district is trying to indoctrinate students.

The district was one of the first in Wisconsin to use the book “McDougal Littell Literature, Grade 8,” Weiss said. The book is published by McDougal Littell, a division of Holt McDougal. The textbook has a copyright date of 2008, but the district adopted the new book in May 2007. Students and teachers started using the book in September 2007.

The textbook choice was based on the textbook’s emphasis on diversity in the reading selections, Weiss said. The book includes excerpts from American writers, of Native American, Japanese and Hispanic descent.

The textbook’s editors felt that Obama’s work was a strong example of an autobiography, coupled with his speech, which showed how a person’s life story affects that individuals’ work, Blake said. It was chosen for a specific pedagogical purpose, according to [Rick Blake, a spokesman for Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, the parent company of Holton McDougal, the book’s publishers].

To read the entire article, CLICK HERE.