Con: Finding something to celebrate


Story by Frankie Calabrese Barton, Staff Writer

My memories of the elementary Halloween parties as a child are filled with crisp air, laughing with my friends and the excitement of getting to dress up for school. I always loved the costume parades in my elementary school, because they allowed me to express myself and what I like. 

The Halloween celebrations were a break from the tiring days of school, and a glimpse of light in the dreary days of fall, and that experience is one that any young child deserves. 

Don’t get me wrong, I see where the district is coming from in their attempt to make all kids feel included by not celebrating Halloween. Not everyone finds Halloween to be a joyous and exciting holiday, and the children whose families don’t celebrate Halloween feel excluded each year. Their voices deserve to be heard. 

However, the district cannot fairly serve the majority of children by only fulfilling the needs of those few. Just because a few students don’t celebrate Halloween, should we take it away from everyone? 

The district clearly put very little effort into resolving the issue, because instead of just robbing the children of fun, they could have simply shifted the festivities to be more inclusive. Instead of having Halloween parties, there could be fall parties. Costumes and candy could be more regulated to fit parent’s concerns and to make kids feel left out. 

It shouldn’t be all or nothing. Especially in a time when these children have spent the past 18 months having virtually all fun events taken away from them due to COVID-19. 

Additionally, it is unfair and unrealistic for the school district to expect students to go to school on Oct. 31 and treat it as a normal day. The school said that having class celebrations takes away from learning time, but these are children; they grow more from having fun and building core memories than they will from practicing their multiplication tables. They’ll have plenty of time to do that any other day, and let’s face it, even if there is no Halloween party in the classroom, they still won’t be able to focus because they are looking forward to the celebrations after school.

The elementary school Valentine’s Day parties are another aspect of school that children look forward to each year, and with Valentine’s Day still months away, the district has a chance to change their minds about that pause. If parents are concerned about the celebration being too focused on “love,” then schools can shift the focus to being more about friendship, because that is always something to celebrate.