BROOKINGS, S.D. (KELO) — With new superintendent Summer Schultz, the Brookings school board is taking a closer look at its policies. That includes how the district selects books for classrooms and libraries. A new website and a surge in parent participation at the most recent school board meeting had community members share their thoughts about the future of the policy.

Books like “To Kill a Mockingbird” were one of the books in question according to a website called Save Brookings. As the school board takes a closer look at a school library policy, this site is catching a lot of people’s attention.

Parent and owner of Bad Hand Books Doug Murano says many of the books listed on the website have LGBTQ+ and racial themes.

“There were over 200 books on their list. But primarily, they were focused on getting marginalized authors and books about marginalized authors out of the hands of schoolchildren,” said Murano.

Currently, in the Brookings School District, parents are able to prevent their children from checking out certain books, however, no requests have been filed.

“I would much prefer each parent to be able to monitor with their children reads, without infringing on the rights of my children, or any other children to read what they wish to read,” said Murano.

As the School Board looks closer at district policies, the South Dakota ACLU is watching.

“We the ACLU take censorship very seriously, and we are actively monitoring and tracking every community where these efforts are underway,” said Samantha Chapman who is the advocacy manager at the American Civil Liberties Union.

Parents are also taking it seriously.

“I think the large group of freedom-loving Brookings residents sent a large message to the school board and in my view, they were receptive to that,” said Murano.

The Save Brookings website does not include an email or phone number, so we were unable to contact the person or group behind it.

Save Brookings’ restricted book list.

To read about the policy click here.

To watch the school board meeting click here.