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Porn or Not Porn? Help us Decide on Oct. 11

The Emmaus and Lower Macungie Patch editors invite Patch readers to discuss controversial Emmaus High School summer reading selection 'Prep' by Curtis Sittenfeld at 7:30 p.m. Oct. 11 in Zion's Lutheran Church, 5901 Kings Hwy S, Old Zionsv

Editor's Note: Please note that this article has been changed to reflect the correct location of the book group which is Zion's Lutheran Church, 5901 Kings Hwy S, Old Zionsville.

Curtis Sittenfeld’s “Prep” entered the spotlight in East Penn School District when two parents came forward at the Sept. 10 meeting of the East Penn Board of School Directors to challenge the book, a 9th-grade Emmaus High School summer reading selection, due to what they called its “pornographic” content.

Soon after, the East Penn Patch editors put out a feeler about a “Prep” book discussion group, inviting community members to talk about the merits of the work, and a number of Patch readers expressed an interest in being a part of the conversation.

That conversation is scheduled for Thursday, Oct. 11 at 7:30 p.m. at Zion's Lutheran Church and it’s not too late for other members of the community to join in, too.

Keep in mind, the East Penn Patch editors intend to publish the opinions of the book discussion group on both the Emmaus and Lower Macungie Patch sites following the discussion. If you are interested in participating, grab a copy of “Prep” and start reading.

Summer Reading List "Book Ban" Controversy Timeline

Sept. 10: Two East Penn parents address the East Penn Board of School Directors about the "pornographic" content in two Emmaus High School summer reading selections, "Prep" by Curtis Sittenfeld and Tom Wolfe's "The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test."

Sept. 10: Board member Julian Stolz makes a motion to remove both "Prep" and "Acid Test" from the EHS summer reading list.

Sept. 14: The East Penn Patch editors invite Patch readers to read "Prep" along with them and weigh in on whether or not they deem its content to be “pornographic.”

Between Sept. 10 and Sept. 24: EHS students develop an online student petition against banning the book.

Sept. 24: About a dozen or so community members come forward at the School Board meeting to share their views on “Prep” and book banning with the board.

Sept. 24: Board President Charles Ballard voids Stolz’s "book ban" motion, because it hadn’t been touched off by a formal challenge to the book through an established district procedure known as Policy 109. He said moving forward with the motion could open East Penn up to potential lawsuits.

Sept. 24: East Penn School District receives a formal written challenge to both "Prep" and "The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test" via East Penn's Policy 109 prior to the school board meeting.

Ongoing: East Penn is pulling together committees made up of administrators, faculty, community members and school board members to read each book and come up with a recommendation for the board.

A Later Date: The school board will make a decision on the Policy 109 challenges to each book.

If you’d like to read “Prep” with us, please email jennifer.marangos@patch.com or mariella.savidge@patch.com and include your name, the municipality in which you live, and whether or not you have children in East Penn School District (you don't have to). We'll choose people on a first-come, first-served basis.

careless fills October 01, 2012 at 12:54 PM
phooey!!! I can't read that fast!!
Jennifer Marangos October 01, 2012 at 01:03 PM
@careless fills -- you are welcome to read as much as you can and come to hear the discussion if you like. I am not that far into the book, myself, truth-be-told, but it does seem like a pretty quick read. Finding the time to read, that's my dilemma!
Mariella Savidge October 01, 2012 at 01:50 PM
It's a very quick read. I'm almost done with it, though I have had to fight my usual tendency to get into a book and in doing so completely shut out the rest of the world! You know... wash doesn't get done, meals are not cooked. I'm happy to say I've been able to avoid that this time. @careless fills, I agree with Jennifer: read as much as you can and please join us!
Abel Anderson October 02, 2012 at 12:38 AM
Immediately followed by a somewhat less orderly discussion at the Vera Cruz Tavern. Careless drinks for free.

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