Florida Did Not Ban ‘To Kill a Mockingbird,’ Contrary to Widely Shared Claim

August 22, 2022 Updated 4:43 PM ET

To Kill A Mockingbird, Ashland Shakespeare Festival, Oregon (Carissa Rogers).
To Kill A Mockingbird, Ashland Shakespeare Festival, Oregon (Carissa Rogers).

TALLAHASSEE (FLV) – Gov. Ron DeSantis’ Press Secretary clapped back at a false claim that Florida banned To Kill a Mockingbird in public schools while a California school system pulled the book from its curriculum.

“The State of Florida has not banned To Kill a Mockingbird,” Press Secretary Bryan Griffin said. “In fact, Florida RECOMMENDS the book in 8th grade.”

“To Kill a Mockingbird” is on the list for Florida’s B.E.S.T standards English Language Arts list.

Griffin’s response came after a popular twitter account tweeted the incorrect information Sunday, which received more than 1,000 retweets.

American Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten admitted she shared a false tweet about Florida banning “To Kill a Mockingbird.”

“I should have double checked before I retweeted this list. My bad. Looks like some of the books weren’t banned. Book bans are very real & dangerous,” she said on Sunday.

Griffin did point out that “To Kill a Mockingbird” was removed from Burbank, California public schools.

News reports said parents claimed Lee Harper’s book, along with other classics, caused “harm” to the school district’s 400 Black students.

Groups like Moms for Liberty have challenged inappropriate books in school libraries. For example, in Brevard County the group challenged dozens of books that detail sexual encounters and income violent rapes in some.

“These books specifically violate Florida statute so Florida law says that you cannot have pornographic materials in the schools,” said Ashley Hall with Moms for Liberty Brevard. 

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