The Daily Caller reports new educational standards now approved in 46 of 50 states mandate that nonfiction books constitute at least 70 per cent of high school students’ assigned reading. As a result, classic novels like The Catcher In The Rye by J.D. Salinger and To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee are going to be replaced by insulation manuals and dispatches from the Federal Reserve. The new reading regime is required to be fully in place by 2014, according tot he Common Core State Standards, and English teachers have the next year to decide which novels, short stories and poems to eliminate.
Per the The Daily Caller, the “suggested nonfiction list includes undeniably important works as well, such as the Declaration of Independence and Alexis de Tocqueville’s Democracy in America.” However, there’s also “Executive Order 13423: Strengthening Federal Environmental, Energy and Transportation Management,” a publication of the General Services Administration.
Those policy and educational supporters throwing their support behind the changes include the National Governors Association and the Council of Chief State School Officers. A grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation has provided considerable funding.
However, the new educational standards have plenty of detractors, too.
For more information, see The Daily Caller story as reported by Yahoo News here: http://news.yahoo.com/classic-literature-dropped-high-schools-favor-informational-texts-082338135.html
Bryan Thomas Schmidt is an author and editor of adult and children’s science fiction, fantasy and humor books, short stories and articles. A frequent contributor to blogs like SFSignal, Adventures In SF Publishing, Grasping For The Wind and To Be Read, he also hosts Science Fiction and Fantasy Writer’s Chat under the hashtag #sffwrtcht on Twitter and blogs about writing and creativity on his own blog at www.bryanthomasschmidt.net/blog. Connect With Bryan On Google+