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251

Re-Evaluation Of A Learning Resource

Background

Any resident or staff member of the Division may challenge learning resource materials/textbooks, library resources, or software/internet resources used in a school’s educational program on the basis of appropriateness.  It is the Division’s desire that each challenge is given due consideration and handled in an appropriate manner. 

Procedures

  1. The following shall be considered in respect of the re-evaluation of learning resources:
    1. Any member of the community within the jurisdiction of Northern Gateway Public Schools or an employee may formally challenge learning resources used in a school on the basis of appropriateness.
    2. A parent or guardian has the right to determine reading, viewing or listening matter for his/her own children
    3. The principles of freedom to read/listen/view will be upheld during the re­-evaluation process.
    4. Access to the learning resource(s) being challenged shall not be restricted during the re-evaluation process.
    5. A decision to support a challenge shall not be interpreted as a judgment of irresponsibility on the part of the professional involved in the original selection and/or use of the learning resource. 


Request for Informal Re-Evaluation

  1. The school, when receiving a complaint regarding a learning resource, shall first try to resolve the issue informally:
    1. The principal and/or other appropriate staff shall explain to the questioner the selection procedure and criteria and the qualifications of those persons selecting the resource.
    2. The principal and/or other appropriate staff shall explain the particular place the questioned resource occupies in the education program, its intended educational use, and additional information regarding its use, or refer the party to someone who can identify and explain the use of the resource.
    3. If the complainant wishes to file a formal challenge, a copy of the school’s materials selection policy and a Request for Re-evaluation of Learning Resources form shall be given by the principal to the party concerned and procedures for re-evaluation shall be initiated. 


Request for Formal Re-Evaluation

  1. Preliminary Procedures:
    1. Northern Gateway schools and division office will keep on hand and make available                          the Request for Re-evaluation of Learning Resources forms.  All formal objections to                                    learning resources must be made on these forms.
    2. The Request for Re-Evaluation of Learning Resources form shall be signed by the                       questioner and filed with the principal.
    3. The Request for Re-Evaluation shall be referred by the principal to a Re-Evaluation                      Committee appointed by him/her at the school level for re­-evaluation of the resource.                              Resolution of the complaint may result at this level.
  2. Upon receipt of a request for a formal re-evaluation of a learning resource, the principal shall:
    1. Appoint a Re-Evaluation Committee including the following membership as appropriate:
      1. Principal or designate
      2. One member of the school teaching staff chosen by the principal
      3. The librarian (where appropriate i.e.  library materials)
      4. One parent member of the school council as chosen by the principal
    2. Establish a meeting date as soon as possible after the complaint is received.
    3. The principal or designate, as a non-voting member, shall chair the Re-Evaluation Committee.
    4. The Re-Evaluation Committee may choose to consult other professionals from the school or the community with related professional knowledge.
    5. The Re-Evaluation Committee shall review the resource in question and judge its adherence to the principles of selection outlined in the school’s materials selection policy.
  3. The Re-Evaluation Committee shall proceed with the following guidelines:
    1. Examine the challenged resource.
    2. Determine professional acceptance by reading critical reviews of the resource                             wherever available.
    3. Weigh values and faults and form opinions based on the resource as a whole, and in                              context.
    4. Discuss the resource within the context of the educational program.
  4. Prepare a written report and inform stakeholders.
    1. The written report shall state the findings of the committee and its recommendation* to retain or exclude the learning resource in question.
    2. The complainant shall be advised of the decision of the committee, to retain or exclude the learning resource, in a timely manner.
    3. The written report shall be discussed by the committee chairperson with the individual complainant if requested.
    4. The written report shall be retained by the school principal, with copies forwarded to ‘the complainant and the Superintendent.
      1. The complainant shall retain the right to appeal the decision of the    Re-Evaluation Committee to the Superintendent.

References:

Sections 18, 20, 39, 60, 61,113 School Act

Board Policy 12 Role of the Superintendent


Reviewed July 2010