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This Middle School’s Policy Forces Kids To Say Yes When Asked To Dance

A Utah mother is unsettled when she learned about a rule in place at her daughter’s middle school, and it’s easy to see why!

This Utah mother was appalled when she found out that her daughter was FORCED to dance with a boy that made her feel uncomfortable at her middle school dance.

School dances are supposed to be fun right?! Well, this middle schooler had anything but fun at her most recent school dance sadly.

She became very uncomfortable after her principal informed her that she was forbidden to decline a boy’s request to dance with her.

Supposedly the school has a rule in place that every student is required to dance with one another so that no one feels rejected or left out.

Her mother posted the following on Facebook addressing the unsettling situation, in hopes, that it will bring awareness to the real issue with this rule.

NO MEANS NO.

A kid at school that makes my daughter uncomfortable asked her to dance at the school dance on Valentine’s Day. She tried to say no thank you, and the principal overheard and intervened and told her she’s not allowed to say no and that she has to dance with him.

This boy has been quoted as publicly saying something very disturbing of a sexual nature. It doesn’t matter if it’s true or not. It doesn’t matter if rumors are terrible and should be dismissed. That’s irrelevant. The point is that this kid makes my daughter feel uncomfortable. She should not have to stand close to him with his hands on her if she doesn’t want to. She has the right to say no to anyone for any reason or no reason. Her body is her body and if she doesn’t want to dance with someone, that’s her prerogative.

I understand that the spirit of the rule is give the kids the confidence to ask other kids to dance without the risk of rejection, but guess what? In life, you get rejected all the time. They need to get used to it and learn how to cope with their frustration. Girls HAVE to learn that they have the right to say no and that those around them have to respect that. I’m not going to quietly stand by while my daughter and all of her classmates are being wrapped up in rape culture. No way.

I’ve told her over and over, since her school started having dances that she has the right to say no, and if she gets in trouble for it, I’ll fight like hell for her. Well, here we go.

I have reached out to the principal. He told me that he is not changing the policy. He said my option is to either accept this policy, or keep my daughter home from school when they have a school dance. I emailed the superintendent and told him the response I got from the principal and asked him if he has anything to add to that, but he has not responded. He has been copied on all emails since this incident happened and is well aware of the situation, but has not said a word so far.

My next step will be to contact the Utah Board of Education. I appreciate the support I’ve gotten from everyone. I’m so angry right now for all the kids in that school. Why can’t they just have a fun school dance and not be forced to dance with kids they don’t want to dance with? What if my daughter doesn’t feel safe with the boy who asks her?

This policy makes a lot of kids uncomfortable. The principal stated to me multiple times that my family is not the first to complain and that many kids have felt uncomfortable with it, but they just checked their kid out of school or submitted to the policy.

That’s unacceptable.

Do better Rich Middle School.

Alicia Hobson

As parents, we put a lot of effort into educating our children about boundaries and consent… and this school is teaching the opposite in my opinion.

How does this situation make you feel as a parent or perhaps as an educator?

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