The Wilson County School Board banned a book Monday night from its reading list for ninth-graders taking honors-level English classes.
The board said ""The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time" by Mark Haddon contains offensive language. The board voted 3-1 to remove the book from the list of approved reading in the school district. One board member was absent.
"The F-bomb is pretty common in that book, and that's what I have a problem with," said board member Wayne McNeese, who received complaints about the book from some of his constituents. "I'm not dumb enough to think students don't hear that language, but it doesn't mean we should promote it."
The book is about a 15-year-old with a type of autism who investigates the death of a neighbor's dog.
The story was required reading at Mt. Juliet High School, Wilson Central High School and Lebanon High School.
"I think the school board is micromanaging," said Annette Stafford, the Wilson County Commission's Education Committee chairwoman. "It's a parental decision."
Parents or students are able to opt out of reading any assigned book by talking with the teacher to choose an appropriate replacement, Interim Director of Schools Mary Ann Sparks said.
School Board Chairman Don Weathers said he voted to remove the book because he wants to ensure parents are involved in approving reading material with questionable content.
Wilson County parent Kristi Dunn supported the board's action.
"There is a fine line, and I don't want censorship, but if there is a book parents aren't happy with or feel is inappropriate, then the board should have authority to pull that book," Dunn said.
Reach Andy Humbles at 615-726-5939 and on Twitter @AndyHumbles.