Social Justice Resources
Social justice and a focus on social activism have become an essential component of many classrooms, schools, and curricula. As a diversity-focused publisher, and one of the few minority-owned publishers in the US, Lee & Low Books is proud to offer books and resources to support social justice learning in the classroom.
When the Common Core Standards were created, the authors included a list of titles in Appendix B that exemplified the level of text complexity found in Appendix A and inherent quality for reading materials at each grade level. This list was intended as a comparative tool, as a way for teachers and administrators to measure current libraries against countrywide expectations for rigorous literature and informational text. Since its publication, this list, and the titles included and omitted, has created quite a bit of controversy.
Our motto, “about everyone, for everyone,” is as urgent today as it was when we started publishing books in 1993. Despite the best efforts of LEE & LOW BOOKS and other publishers and imprints that focus on diversity, the proportion of books that feature racial and ethnic diversity has not increased. For nearly as long as we have been publishing, only about 10 percent of children’s books have contained diverse themes, even though 37 percent of the United States population are identified as people of color.
Our Diversity Gap studies highlight distinct societal problems that pervade entertainment, media, and even the US government. Underrepresentation, inequality, and lack of social justice all stem from not having a seat at the proverbial table. While some would argue that we live in a post-racial society, and that discussions about race are not needed, we question why the numbers look like they do.