Jul 28, 2014

Should Father-Daughter Dances Be Banned in RI?

The music is over for father-daughter dances in one Rhode Island city.

Should Father-Daughter Dances Be Banned in RI? Should Father-Daughter Dances Be Banned in RI?

Earlier in the school year, parents in Cranston were notified that father-daughter and mother-son activities will no longer be held in the schools because school lawyers concluded they violate state laws.

The action was triggered by a letter from the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), said School Superintendent Judith Lundsten. The letter was written on behalf of a mother who said her daughter was unable to go to the father-daughter dance.

Federal laws under Title IX allow father-son and mother-daughter events but state law is more restrictive, Lundsten said.

Republican Sean Gately, who is running for the state House Dist. 26 seat, issued a heated press release lambasting the school district.

In the release, Gately said his opponent, School Committee Member Frank Lombardi and his "school committee was asleep at the switch."

"Where is the 'Proven Leadership' I keep hearing about," Gately fired. "After already losing $150,000 of taxpayer money on the banner controversy, they made no effort to protect another important tradition enjoyed by generations of parents and children in the Cranston school system."

The change in policy occurred without any public discussion and the School Committee did not vote for any change. Gately said the issue could easily be fixed by inserting language in the state law that mirrors federal Title IX policy.

What do you think about the father-daughter dance ban? Let us know in the comments.

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