Silver Spring, Md. — Parents who disagreed with their school’s decision to cancel an annual Halloween celebration at Cloverly Elementary took the unusual step of setting up a Halloween party while school was still in session.
A few dozen fifth grade parents pulled their children from school around 1:30 p.m.-- with close to 2 hours left in the school day-- to host a party in the park adjacent to the school.
Schools in Montgomery County have the option of recognizing Halloween with parties and allowing kids and staff to dress up or banning all celebrations.
Parents said the principal of the school indicated months ago that she wanted to cancel Halloween festivities this year but according to parents never gave them a good reason dropping what had been a tradition at the school complete with a Halloween parade.
“When she met with the PTA she talked about eliminating Halloween celebrations for religious reasons and then safety reasons so we never got a good answer as to why she wanted to do this,” said Angela Edwards, a parent who has raised two children that have made their way through Cloverly.
In years past, Cloverly fifth graders gathered for a large party in which teachers and students dressed up and participated in a Halloween parade to show off all the costumes kids wore to school.
Edwards said yanking the tradition away from fifth graders spending their last year at the school was not fair to the kids.
“The decision was already made and it was obvious to us she never listened to what we we were saying,” said Edwards. “She never asked us for suggestions, she never wanted to create something that would make the kids happy.”
A fall festival has been talked about to replace a Halloween party at Cloverly but it was not planned in time to replace a Halloween party.