BRADENTON, Fla. — Parents and educators passionate about the new state guidelines aimed at restricting which books can be inside a teacher’s classroom library took turns addressing Manatee County school board members on Tuesday night.

A handful of parents in support of the new state guidelines went as far as offering their time to volunteer in classrooms and help teachers go through their classroom libraries.

What You Need To Know

  • During Tuesday's meeting, parents offered to help go through classroom libraries

  • On Friday, the Manatee County School Board will assess 30 books flagged by community members

  • State guidelines say no pornographic, inappropriate material in classroom libraries 

  • PREVIOUS STORY: Manatee County schools prepare for book ban

“When I started reading some of these books I was mortified,” said parent Jennifer Lynn-Wayman. “I would have pulled my children out of school had I seen that kind of filth… so I am more than happy to go in and help get rid of it.”

“It seems like it’s tough for the teachers, but we are here to support them," added another parent. "We’ve got volunteers ready to come into the classrooms and we want to do this as quickly as possible and in the end this is going to be a much better streamlined system for everybody… parents, teachers, administration to know what’s there."

Librarian Marie Masferrer, who formally worked at a Manatee County middle school, spoke out against the new guidelines. She says a big part of learning is getting children to read and love reading and part of that process is selecting their own books.

“Part of that is their self selection and what is available. If you truly believe there is something inappropriate in the classroom in this county with your teachers… I urge you to go directly to that teacher and their principal because it’s not happening,” Masferrer said.

New state guidelines say that books made available to students cannot include any content that could be seen as pornographic or inappropriate for the grade level and age group for which the material is used. The statute also states that reading material must be free of bias and indoctrination when discussing race, cultural diversity, and socioeconomic issues.

According to staff members, teachers were told last week that in order to adhere to state law ‘unvetted’ books need to me made inaccessible to students or it could lead to a third-degree felony charge.

Manatee County school board members are now tasked to make some decisions as to what the vetting process will be.

“It’s not that we up here created this law, but we’re going to make sure you’re protected,” explained board member Chad Choate during Tuesday's meeting. “This isn’t a ban on books - that you can’t have a library in your classroom - it just can’t be pornography.”

During a scheduled workshop on Friday, school board members will be asked to review a list of 30 books that have been flagged by community members. They will also discuss the process of assessing questionable books, or one's parents' challenge, in a teacher's classroom library.

A vote on the new process is scheduled for mid-February.