Source/Permission: Copyright, The Roanoke Times, republished by permission
Author: Paul Dellinger, Southwest Bureau
Publication Date: May 8, 1992
Summary: This article talks about Goldwasser’s actions to defend the novel and her request that the county follow the written procedure of its challenge policy.
HILLSVILLE – A Carroll County teacher is considering the withdrawal of a grievance involving the school administration’s banning of a novel she had taught as supplemental reading in advanced 11th-grade English.
One of the two parents who complained about Marion Goldwasser’s use of “The Floatplane Notebooks” by Clyde has now submitted a formal complaint so the book can go through a screening process already set up in the school system.
That was what Goldwasser asked for in her April 20 grievance.
“The complainant should submit a specific written complaint regarding ‘Floatplane Notebooks’ detailing the objections,” it said. “This complaint should be referred to a textbook screening committee representing the views of the students, parents, teaching staff and supervisory staff, with said committee then evaluating the material in terms of the original criteria for selection.”
Harold Golding, Carroll County High School principal, told her Thursday that her grievance has been satisfies now that a parent has started the book through the process.
Goldwasser said she wanted to be sure all the groups she mentioned would be represented on the screening committee, that they would hear the original selection criteria, and that she would be able to explain why she felt the book was appropriate.
“So those questions haven’t been answered yet,” she said Thursday night. “But I want to make sure that those things are met.”
School administrators had ordered the book withdrawn from classes after parents led by local radio evangelist J.B. Lineberry threatened a public demonstration outside the school.
Lineberry says he wants Goldwasser fired.
Since Goldwasser filed the grievance over the book being removed without going through the review process, Lineberry has used his radio broadcast over Hillsville station WHHV to lambast her. He maintains the novel contains profanity and descriptions of sexual activity inappropriate for 11th-graders to read.
Sixty-seven of the school’s 71 teachers signed a petition saying they wanted the committee review process followed. Lineberry’s reaction to that was: “That don’t show too good a morals in our school system.”
Goldwasser was the school’s Teacher of the Year during the last school year. “That doesn’t make her no angel,” Lineberry said in a broadcast last week.
The executive board of the Virginia Association of Teachers of English passed a resolution supporting Goldwasser for “her professional stance in the defense of the rights of teachers to exercise professional judgement to choose curriculum materials” and calling for the evaluation policy to be followed.
Dellinger, P. “Parent files book grievance: Teacher satisfied screening policy will be followed.” 08 May 1992. The Roanoke Times. Accessed April 6, 2019. Microfilm.