ANTELOPE (CBS13) — There will be no classroom cauldrons or costume parades at North Country Elementary this Halloween after the district called off all events, citing low attendance.
“I think there’s more kids that celebrate Halloween than don’t,” Carol Morisette said.
Costumes, candies and celebrations won’t be allowed on campus for All Hallows’ Eve at North Country.
Those traditions were something former students like Alex Gonzalez cherished.
“Everyone would hype it up like, ‘Oh are you bringing your costume?’ ‘Are you dressing up?’ ‘Are you bringing food, candy and stuff?’” Gonzalez said. “But now, it’s kind of sad that the kids that are at that school won’t get to experience that.”
Parents and students wonder why this change was implemented.
“This is the first time that they say that,” Leticia Villanueva said. “I don’t know what happened, maybe because of religion probably.”
“I think it’s that they don’t [want to] offend some groups,” Morisette said.
CBS13 went to the Center Joint Unified District to get answers as to why the school’s policy changed. The district sent CBS13 a statement, saying that there has been an increasing trend of parents withholding their students from school and events on Halloween.
The district said in part, “The school hosts many activities throughout the school year celebrating various events and
holidays. We will continue to do so. We have consistently respected the right of families to choose to have their children participate, or not, in such celebrations. However, when the number of students choosing to not participate becomes significant, it is incumbent on the school leadership to re-evaluate and determine if the event is truly meeting the social and academic needs of its student population.”
Some feel that events should still go on if they are done in good taste.
“Most of the kids, they get scared with, for example, clowns, scary clowns or dead people or something,” Villanueva said.
“It’s elementary! They should have fun before they get to middle school, starting to go to eight classes with some grump teachers,” Gonzalez said.
The district said it will still host an evening harvest festival for students and their families after school. It also said it will work with parent-teacher organizations to figure out other after-school Halloween events in the future.