Katy ISD cancels author's elementary school visits over her use of 'F' word on social media

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Thursday, January 19, 2023
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KATY, Texas (KTRK) -- Katy ISD canceled an author's visit to two of its elementary school campuses after the district said it discovered that she repeatedly used the "F" word on social media.

New York Times bestselling author Emma Straub was scheduled to visit with kindergarten and 1st grade students at Robertson Elementary and Cimarron Elementary about the writing process on Friday, Jan. 13.

The video above is a previous report on the battle over books in Katy ISD.

READ: Texas lawmaker files bill to require ratings on school books: 'This isn't setting (books) on fire'

But the day before, the schools sent a letter to parents, explaining that they were pulling the visit because "it has been brought to our attention that this author has regularly used inappropriate and foul language on her social media platforms - specifically repeated use of the 'F' word. This type of language, as you know, does not align with our school and community's values. Therefore, the campus has elected to cancel the author's visit that was scheduled for Friday, January 13."

The letter in full reads as follows.

Our school recently scheduled an on-campus visit for kindergarten and 1st grade students with children's book author, Emma Straub. The visit was intended to be an opportunity to visit with a children's book author, who wrote Very Many Hats and learn about the writing process. However, it has been brought to our attention that this author has regularly used inappropriate and foul language on her social media platforms - specifically repeated use of the "F" word. This type of language, as you know, does not align with our school and community's values. Therefore, the campus has elected to cancel the author's visit that was scheduled for Friday, January 13. We apologize for any misunderstandings or inconvenience regarding this decision. Though, ensuring we are consistently modeling appropriate behaviors and expectations for our students, both in the classroom and via other campus opportunities, is of high priority for our Robertson Bulldogs.

In response to her canceled visits, Straub said in a tweet, "I was sorry not to be able to read my silly book about hats and imagination to those kids. The only F words in the presentation: funny, feline, feelings."

Straub has been on tour with the release of her first picture book, "Very Good Hats."

On the day she was to visit Katy ISD, Straub stopped at Blue Willow Bookshop in west Houston where it appeared she did get to share her new book with other local students.

Straub wrote on her blog that she "couldn't wait to come to Houston, because Cathy Berner at Blue Willow is one of my best bookselling pals, and the person I most often text with about boybands, and one of the truly great kid lit evangelists in the country. Cathy picked me up and we hugged and then she told me the news-the two schools we were supposed to visit had cancelled, due to a couple of parents complaining to the school board about something they'd seen on my social media. Cathy, the hero that she is, had already arranged a visit to another school, with about eight hours notice."

She went on to say that what she did find that a Texas school board might object to is that she hosted an abortion fundraiser at Books Are Magic, the independent bookstore she owns in New York, "one of my sons in a dress, and our ongoing Melt The Guns fundraiser for Everytown, for which we have raised (to date) over $25,000."

Straub is the author of bestsellers "This Time Tomorrow," "All Adults Here," "Modern Lovers" and "The Vacationers."

SEE ALSO: Katy ISD library coordinators provide student, parents, board with clarity on book selection process