School Decides to Read Book About Black Astronaut to All Students After Parent Complains

By , NewsRadio 1120 KMOX

WILDWOOD, Mo. (KMOX) - The Rockwood School District is responding to a parent's complaint about a book that was read to a second-grade class, by having it read to the entire school. 

The book is called "Ron's Big Mission," written about Astronaut Ron McNair – the only Black member of the 1986 NASA Challenger crew. The book focuses on his fight to get a library card in segregated South Carolina when he was a kid growing up there in the 1950s.

But it apparently didn't sit well with one parent of Pond Elementary School.

After hearing it read to her 7-year-old during an online video chat, the parent urged other parents to "preview what we are letting the kids see on there." The statement was posted in a Facebook group for Concerned Parents of the Rockwood School District. The parent said she called the school about it.

Rockwood Education Equity and Diversity Director Brittany Hogan says the response from other parents supporting the book was immediate.

"They were saying this is amazing that they were buying copies of the book," Hogan says. "One of our parents came out and said she was going to purchase a copy for every second-grader at the elementary school that her children attends."

"He deserves to be celebrated. His story deserves to be told to our children," Hogan says. "It's important that we continue to move in a space that embeds diverse curriculum."

In reaction to the complaint, Pond Elementary School principal Carlos Diaz-Granados will read the book, on Zoom, to the entire student body next Wednesday afternoon.

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