Virginia school system ends Dr. Seuss celebration, citing ‘racial undertones’

Virginia school system ends Dr. Seuss celebration, citing ‘racial undertones’

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) - A Virginia school district has made the decision to end the celebration of Dr. Seuss during Read Across America Day, due to the “radical undertones in the books written and the illustrations drawn by Dr. Seuss.”

Read Across America Day is typically celebrated in recognition of the importance of reading and literacy. The day also celebrates Dr. Seuss’ birthday.

Loudon County Public School officials said that while many other schools will continue to celebrate Dr. Seuss during Read Across America Day, it is important for them “to be cognizant of research that may challenge our practice in this regard.”

The schools have given guidance to not directly correlate Read Across America Day with the author’s birthday exclusively, as a way to promote equality.

“As we become more culturally responsive and racially conscious, all building leaders should know that in recent years there has been research revealing radical undertones in the books written and the illustrations drawn by Dr. Seuss,” school officials said.

The school district released a statement stating Dr. Seuss books have not been banned in the school system.

“We want to encourage our young readers to read all types of books that are inclusive and diverse and reflective of our student community,” officials said.