Released October 19, CBS Seattle reported that Lafayette Elementary School, in Seattle, has decided to not “allow students to dress up in costume for Halloween this year.”
Crazy, right? It gets better:
“The decisions was first reported by the district (Seattle Public Schools) as being a preventative measure in the event that Halloween costumes could offend and upset students who come from other cultures,” says CBS Seattle.
Many parents are still confused as to why the decision was made, though. Are Christmas hats going to be banned come December? Are people going to be offended by the five-finger hand drawings of turkeys made by children and the less artistically inclined during Thanksgiving, because it depicts a practice enjoyed by one culture and possibly not all cultures?
Shauna Heath, principal of the elementary school, sent out an email to all major media outlets. Here’s an excerpt:
“This decision was made by the entire staff after two deep and detailed discussions. The initial conversation was initiated by staff members who suggested that since Halloween falls this year on a half day of school, we not allow costumes. It takes students a while to change into their costumes, and students are distracted taking away from their already limited instructional time.”
Upon hearing the news, fourth-grader Leilani Nitkey said, “I was just really sad and I had to fight back years.
According to KIRO 9 Eyewitness News, the school has announced a “Harvest Party” that will replace the Halloween celebrations. Not quite as exciting, to say the least, but I guess it’s better than nothing.
“Some parents say that although Halloween has its roots as a religious observance, it’s now a secular holiday that shouldn’t be considered offensive,” says CBS Seattle.
Parent Hart Rusen said, “It seems like another one of those things where kids are no longer allowed to be kids.”