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2020 (P) - Form 3 - Guidelines for Use of Classroom Novels



I. Novels selected by teachers for study as part of the instructional program are usually considered supplemental materials unless identified or included as part of the formal adoption process. These novels must have instructional value, be related to the goals and objectives of the instructional program, be included in the lesson plan/syllabus and be appropriate for the age and maturity level of the students being taught.

II. The teacher wishing to use a classroom novel must:
a. Pre-read the novel
b. If applicable, secure prior approval from the building administrator using Form 2020: Administrator Approval Request for Classroom Use of Video or Novel
c. If applicable, communicate with parents using Form 2020: Parent Permission Form

III. Classroom Novels Read by Students
The district has identified Common Sense Media’s research-based, independent rating system (https://www.commonsensemedia.org/about-us/our-mission/about-our-ratings) as a tool to help inform age-level appropriateness for novels assigned to students as part of the instructional program, and when principal/parent notification is required. If proposed novels are not included in the Common Sense database, an alternative nationally-recognized review service will be sought such as School Library Journal, Follett, Booklist, Kirkus or Hornbook Reviews. Teachers are encouraged to consult with their school librarian for assistance.

a. If the Common Sense age rating is at or below the proposed class band level (see below), neither parent nor administrator permission is required.
b. If the Common Sense age rating is within 1 or 2 years above the class band level (see below), principal permission must first be sought. If approved, parents are to be notified using Form 2020: Parent Permission Form.
c. Age ratings in excess of 2 years are tentatively not approved for use. Appeals can be made to the Teaching and Learning Department.


 Common Sense Age Level

Elementary School

At or below 11

Middle School 

At or below 14

High School

At or below 17


d. College-level classes taught at the high school such as Running Start, College in the High School and AP/Honors programs, as a result of their advanced Lexile reading levels, are exempt from this procedure. Teachers of such classes shall make available a syllabus to students and families at the beginning of every year or term outlining novels to be read as part of the curricular program. If requested by families, an alternate resource will be made available.

Revised: October 2022

WALLA WALLA PUBLIC SCHOOLS • 364 South Park St. • Walla Walla, WA 99362 • Phone: 509-527-3000 • Fax: 509.529.7713

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