"It's just not age-appropriate," said school spokeswoman Betti Cadmus told the newspaper. "It's hard to sit and read the dictionary, but we'll be looking to find other things of a graphic nature."
The school board will decide later whether to return the dictionaries to the classrooms. One board member told the Press-Enterprise that there are probably more objectionable terms in the dictionary.
Fortunately, only weirdos like me actually read bits of the dictionary, so they don't have much to worry about on that front. I feel sorry for those school board members, who will soon be presented to such frightening terms as "penis," "vagina," and "masturbation."
Here's to the fourth and fifth graders of Menifee Union School District, who will soon be Googling "oral sex" when they hear it on the bus or in gym instead of looking it up in the relatively benign dictionary.
The follow up article contained this gem:
The collegiate dictionaries were purchased several years ago to allow advanced readers in the fourth and fifth grades to look up words that they didn't know, Cadmus said.
Other less extensive and more elementary dictionaries remain available to students, she said.
As happens to often in our system, it is the best and brightest who stand to be punished. Let's hope cooler heads prevail at the review so that these kids can continue to enjoy their dictionary and perhaps get a couple of giggles when they accidentally (or, more likely, purposefully) stumble across a dirty word.