Erotic book ends up in TN fifth-grader's hands at school

FRANKLIN, Tenn. — British author Roald Dahl is probably most commonly known for his children's books, including the likes of "James and the Giant Peach," "Matilda" and "Fantastic Mr. Fox."

But Dahl also wrote adult fiction and somehow one of his more erotic-themed books ended up on a fifth-grade classroom bookshelf at Freedom Intermediate School, and in the hands of a student, say school officials in Franklin Special School District.

"It wasn't done with malice or intent," said FSSD Schools Director David Snowden, explaining that the book was among a box of books donated to the teacher, who in turn put the books on the shelves in his classroom without evaluating them individually.

Students are allowed to check out books at the school, and this book — Switch Bitch, a collection of short stories for adults originally published in "Playboy" in the 1970s — ended up being seen by the fifth-grader about two weeks ago. The child later told her parents, Snowden said.

The child's parents alerted the school's principal, and an investigation was conducted. The teacher was not terminated, but did face discipline, which he has already served, the director said.

Snowden said that it is the district's responsibility to review materials accessible to students, and that the educator neglected his responsibility.

"We don't like to make mistakes. We take pride in what we do, and making sure we provide appropriate resources for children," he said. "And, when we make mistakes. It's hard."


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