BALTIMORE (WJZ) – An elementary school librarian in Massachusetts is passing on a donation offered by the First Lady.
According to CBS Boston, the Cambridgeport Elementary school was selected by the White House to receive ten Dr. Seuss books as part of National Read a Book Day. One school from each state was selected.
The school’s librarian Liz Phips Soeiro, wrote an editorial for the Horn Book’s Family Reading blog to explain why she was turning down the offer.
“My students have access to a school library with over nine thousand volumes and a librarian with a graduate degree in library science. Multiple studies show that schools with professionally staffed libraries improve student performance,” wrote Phipps Soeiro.
In addition to turning down the books, the librarian went on to criticize the book choice by the First Lady, and in turn, criticized Dr. Seuss himself.
“You may not be aware of this, but Dr. Seuss is a bit of a cliché, a tired and worn ambassador for children’s literature. As First Lady of the United States, you have an incredible platform with world-class resources at your fingertips.”
The Cambridge School says that the opinions written in the editorial does not reflect the district or the school itself. A statement released by school officials says in part:
“In this instance, the employee was not authorized to accept or reject donated books on behalf of the school or school district. We have counseled the employee on all relevant policies, including the policy against public resources being used for political purposes.”