A Schofield Middle School teacher embroiled in a controversy after reportedly reading to his students from a science fiction book that one parent described as "pornographic" will not face criminal charges, police said.Aiken Public Safety officials said the teacher did not do anything criminal, and the police investigation is closed.At press time Tuesday, they did not give further details.The Aiken County School District's internal investigation remains under way, Associate Superintendent Dr. Cecelia Hewett said Tuesday.On March 12, the teacher was placed on administrative leave while police and school officials investigated whether he breached school policy or the law when he read from three books, among them "Ender's Game" by Orson Scott Card, which became the focus of the probe when a 14-year-old student's mother complained about the subject matter of the book.She went to school officials on Friday, March 9, and then to Aiken Public Safety the following Monday.In addition to the Card novel, which has won several science fiction awards and is listed on numerous children's literary review websites as appropriate for children 12 and older, the teacher read excerpts from an Agatha Christie novel and a young adult novel set in the Old West, officials said.The teacher reportedly selected the books, but may have not followed school policy that would require the books first be reviewed.Joy Shealy, school district academic officer for middle schools, said there is a policy that defines steps teachers should to take when presenting supplemental material."One of the things that teachers are supposed to do is preview material for appropriateness for any questions that may come up," Shealy said. "By doing that, we make sure the materials that are presented to students are age- and instructionally-appropriate - all the things that make a good instructional program."School officials said they expect the matter will be resolved quickly.Administrators said the investigation will include whether school staff followed district protocol in a timely manner."Matters that involve personnel considerations are dealt with promptly but must take into account reasonable measures to protect the privacy of students and staff," according to the district administrator's statement.Rob Novit contributed to this article.Karen Daily, a graduate of USC, has been the crime reporter at the Aiken Standard for seven years. She has reported here since 2001.Amazon: Devil's PaintboxDescription:When orphans Aiden and Maddy Lynch first meet trailrider Jefferson J. Jackson in the spring of 1865, they’re struggling to survive on their family’s drought-ravaged Kansas farm. So when Jackson offers an escape—a 2000-mile journey across the roughest country in the world—Aiden knows it’s their only choice.They say there are a hundred ways to die on the Oregon Trail, and the long wagon journey is broken only by catastrophe: wolf attacks, rattlesnakes, deadly river crossings, Indians, and the looming threat of smallpox, "the devil’s paint." Through it all, Aiden and Maddy and a hundred fellow travelers move forward with a growing hope, and the promise of a new life in the Washington Territory. But one question haunts them: who will survive the journey?In an adventure-filled and historically accurate new novel, Victoria McKernan captures both the peril and the stunning beauty of the frontier West. Shackleton’s Stowaway ("Truly thrilling" according to The Washington Post) was Victoria McKernan’s first novel for young adults. She lives in Washington, D.C.Amazon: Curtain: Poirot's Last CaseDescription:The crime-fighting careers of Hercule Poirot and Captain Hastings have come full circle—they are back once again in the rambling country house in which they solved their first murder together.Both Poirot and Great Styles have seen better days—but, despite being crippled with arthritis, there is nothing wrong with the great detective and his "little gray cells." However, when Poirot brands one of the seemingly harmless guests a five-time murderer, some people have their doubts. But Poirot alone knows he must prevent a sixth murder before the curtain falls.Amazon: Ender's GameDescription:In order to develop a secure defense against a hostile alien race's next attack, government agencies breed child geniuses and train them as soldiers. A brilliant young boy, Andrew "Ender" Wiggin lives with his kind but distant parents, his sadistic brother Peter, and the person he loves more than anyone else, his sister Valentine. Peter and Valentine were candidates for the soldier-training program but didn't make the cut--young Ender is the Wiggin drafted to the orbiting Battle School for rigorous military training.Ender's skills make him a leader in school and respected in the Battle Room, where children play at mock battles in zero gravity. Yet growing up in an artificial community of young soldiers, Ender suffers greatly from isolation, rivalry from his peers, pressure from the adult teachers, and an unsettling fear of the alien invaders. His psychological battles include loneliness, fear that he is becoming like the cruel brother he remembers, and fanning the flames of devotion to his beloved sister.Is Ender the general Earth needs? But Ender is not the only result of the genetic experiments. The war with the Buggers has been raging for a hundred years, and the quest for the perfect general has been underway for almost as long. Ender's two older siblings are every bit as unusual as he is, but in very different ways. Between the three of them lie the abilities to remake a world. If the world survives, that is.
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