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Facts Established Regarding Disruption of Educational Process
According to Mr. Keith, the following facts have been established:
The Board of Education was caught in a no-win situation as this matter developed. The
school administration had enforced a 20+ year old IAHS rule regarding attendance at proms. The
matter immediately became publicized locally and nationally, with tremendous pressure placed on
board members on both sides of the issue.
One board member received threats at his place of employment because of the stance he had
taken on the matter. Board members have received emails, telephone calls and Facebook messages
regarding this matter. The educational process at school was disrupted by students talking about the
issue during class making it impossible for teachers to carry out their instruction.
The principal had long been concerned about the amount of time spent by students and
teachers planning and preparing for the prom, causing valuable educational time to be missed. He
also had concerns about students' drinking and drug use before and after the prom and the potential
liabilityfor the school district. There has been additional concern over having sufficient security and
personnel to supervise the students on prom night.
The board had to make a decision that in its judgment was the best decision for the district
to get back to its mission of educating children.
The current controversy involved attendance at a prom, a social event that should allow
students to have a good time, build camaraderie and enjoy each other's fellowship. However, with
the divisive nature of the issue, that was not going to happen at the prom, regardless of whether the
two female students were allowed to attend as they wished or whether they were denied permission
to go as requested.
With all the disturbances and distractions, with teachers having trouble getting students to
focus in class and prepare for upcoming state-wide tests, and in light of on-going concerns the board