Roberto Clemente book removed from public school libraries in Florida for discrimination references

DUVAL COUNTY, Fla. — A book about Pittsburgh Pirates legend Roberto Clemente is no longer on the shelves in public school libraries in Duval County, Florida, due to discrimination references.

According to NBC News, “Roberto Clemente: Pride of the Pittsburgh Pirates” by Jonah Winter and Raúl Colón is one of over a million books that have been covered or stored and paused for student use in the state.

Officials are in the process of determining if these books comply with new state laws and can be included in school libraries.

NBC News said Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis signed laws in 2022 that require schools to rely on “certified media specialists” to approve which books can be used in classrooms.

Guidance on the new policy was provided to schools in December.

Books must align with new state standards, meaning they cannot teach students in kindergarten through third grade about gender identity and sexual orientation, cannot teach critical race theory and cannot include references to pornography and discrimination.

Roberto Clemente Jr. told NBC News that he owns the book, which was written for children in kindergarten through third grade.

“His story is his story. He went through racism. It’s something that can’t be changed,” Clemente Jr. told NBC News. “But obviously, for the younger students, if it’s something that they feel is too much for them, they might be able to utilize a different book with the same story, but it’s framed differently for them, for that for that age group.”

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