An Indiana teacher who used a much lauded bestseller, The Freedom Writers Diary, to try to inspire under-performing high-school students has been suspended from her job without pay for 18 months. "I thought my students would very much relate to those kids.". Her head agreed and Heermann got written permission from nearly 150 parents, but the Perry Meridian high school board urged her to wait for its decision.
"That was the pivotal moment of my life, when I saw how my students were taken with the book, how they loved it, and then I am told not to let them read it?
It remains available in school libraries. Heermann and the union say there was no explicit ban on the book when she handed it out to pupils on November 15. But later that day she received an email from the board advising her not to teach the book. Barbara Thompson, the school board president, wrote in an email yesterday: "She knew she had defied her supervisors' direction in her work and that her defiance was 'insubordination' and 'neglect of duty'.".