Parents annoyed when school cancels Mother’s Day crafts in the name of inclusivity
Some parents of first and second graders at Albert McMahon Elementary School in Mission, British Columbia, are angry over a notice their kids brought home from school last week. The school decided to forgo having the children make crafts to take home for Mother’s Day and Father’s Day this year in an effort to prevent any kids from feeling left out.
The note explains that after serious thought, the teachers decided to change how they approach Mother’s Day and Father’s Day this year. “In an effort to celebrate diversity, inclusivity, and also nurture our students who are part of non-traditional families, we have decided to encourage (Mother’s and Father’s Day) celebrations to take place at home,” the note explains. “Due to this, we will not be making gifts at school to give on Mother’s Day and Father’s Day. We feel each family knows the best way to celebrate with their own family.”
Mission Public School District Superintendent Angus Wilson said the new policy wasn’t a political statement but rather a reflection of recent school events. “The reasoning wasn’t some cabal or some political plan,” Wilson told King 5. “Instead, there has been a recent trauma involving a student and its parents.”
Makes sense right? After all, not everyone comes from a one mom, one dad household. Mother’s Day and Father’s Day can be rough when you’re a child being raised by a single parent. Plus there are households with two moms or two dads, or homes where parents don’t identity inside the gender binary. And even for children who have both a mom and a dad in their life, that doesn’t necessarily mean the relationship between a child and parent is a healthy one that the child would want to celebrate (ask me how I know this).
But inclusivity clearly isn’t a priority for some parents. “Had to post this,” he writes. “I think disappointed is an understatement … I don’t understand why we, as Canadians, need to give up our traditions that have been passed through generations. I welcome all races and ethnicities, but forcing us to give up things that are important to us as Canadians is crap. And it doesn’t even have anything to do with religion? You can’t celebrate your Mom and Dad?” While some people gently tried to explain to him that no child wants to feel left out, others said they too were upset by the school’s decision, calling it “ridiculous” and “bullshit.”
“Traditional families should have a voice too not just the ‘non traditional’ ones,” said one. “It’s going too far.” Ah yes. There’s been decades upon decades of heteronormative and intact families depicted in the media and celebrated with holidays, so obviously this one attempt at acknowledging that not all families are the same is “going too far.”
Sure, it’s fun to unwrap the lumpy clay paperweight or cup or whatever the hell that’s supposed to be from your kid on Mother’s Day. But children, especially young first and second graders, are sensitive. If this policy prevents even one child from feeling left out, then it’s worth it.