As outlined in the Buncombe County Schools board procedures, after receiving a formal, written complaint in Fall 2017, Toni Morrison’s novel, The Bluest Eye, was reviewed by the High School level Media and Technology Advisory Committee (MTAC). The MTAC is a standing committee that meets year round to make decisions regarding the budget and allocation of funds for the media center of NBHS. (Harris and Sircy Interview). The sections of the book that were called into question, as well as the whole book and its place in the curriculum, were reviewed and the MTAC determined that the book should be removed from the Honors English III reading list and moved to the AP Literature reading list (the Advanced Placement equivalent of English IV). This decision was agreeable to the principal and the complaining parent, so the challenge did not continue through the process to the school board. At this time no book has been chosen to replace The Bluest Eye on the Honor’s English III reading list.
The Bluest Eye was challenged by a parent named Tim Coley, who, in his interview by WLOS, states, “As a Christian single dad, that’s not the values I teach my kids, and it’s certainly not OK for them to have to read a book like that.”
The Bluest Eye was on the Honor’s English III reading list for at least one class at North Buncombe High School (NBHS). At the beginning of the semester, a syllabus was sent home that included a disclaimer about the potentially controversial material. The book was not challenged until after the class had finished reading it.