The independent newspaper of the University of Iowa community since 1868

The Daily Iowan

The independent newspaper of the University of Iowa community since 1868

The Daily Iowan

The independent newspaper of the University of Iowa community since 1868

The Daily Iowan

Iowa City school district removes 68 books in compliance with state law

Senate File 496 requires that school districts remove books describing or depicting sexual acts from libraries.
Photo+illustration+by+Avi+Lapchick.
Avi Lapchick
Photo illustration by Avi Lapchick.

The Iowa City Community School District on Monday removed 68 books from its library shelves across its K-12 schools in compliance with Senate File 496.

Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds signed the law on May 23 that banned books describing or depicting sexual acts from school libraries, something now being done by local schools.


The law also gives parents access to easily transfer their student between schools, prohibits the teaching of gender identity and sexual orientation before seventh grade, and alerts parents if their child requests to use new pronouns.

In an email sent to families, Iowa City schools Superintendent Matt Denger said the district was working to comply with the new law, and to that end, had created a team of administrators, curriculum coordinators, teachers, and teacher librarians who have been reviewing the books in the district's catalog.

“We have full confidence in their ability to conduct this review process diligently and responsibly,” Denger wrote. “Our commitment to this process remains unwavering, and the work is ongoing.”

His email included a link to a Google Document that contains the full list of books, a list he wrote will not be final as the review process of books remains ongoing. Some of the removed books include “The Perks of Being a Wallflower,” “The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo,” and “The Handmaid’s Tale.”

Denger wrote that the final deadline to publish a final list is Jan. 1, 2024.

“Please know that this commitment to compliance will not deter us from our dedication to our students' well-being and to creating inclusive learning environments,” Denger wrote. “Thank you for your patience and understanding as we navigate this new legislation.”

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About the Contributors
Alejandro Rojas, News Editor
he/him/his
Alejandro Rojas is The Daily Iowan's news editor. He previously worked as a news reporter covering Johnson County and was the summer executive editor in 2023. He is a senior, double majoring in journalism and political science.
Avi Lapchick, Arts Editor
(she/her/hers)
Avi Lapchick is an arts editor at The Daily Iowan. A fourth-year student studying English and Creative Writing at the University of Iowa, she previously held the positions of staff photojournalist, summer arts editor, and assistant arts editor at the DI. She is happiest when she is writing or painting.