Father-daughter dance canceled following complaints at elementary school

Published: May. 3, 2016 at 8:39 PM EDT|Updated: May. 4, 2016 at 10:43 AM EDT
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COLUMBIA, SC (WIS) - Plans for a father-daughter dance at a Midlands elementary school have hit a wall following complaints by some parents.

For the last five years, Brockman Elementary in Forest Acres has held a Father-Daughter Dance. During that time, they have raised $2,000 for PTO funds. The move to cancel the dance comes after complaints from a few parents who feel the dance is not inclusive.

The principal and the school's Parent Teacher Organization mutually decided to cancel the dance and refund the money already collected. Richland One School District Communications Director Karen York says the flyer for the dance states that anybody is allowed.

York says as a public school, they make extra effort to be an all-inclusive school.

"There were a few parents that did not think the father-daughter dance was inclusive, when actually, it was at all times," York said. "It was never an event that was exclusive to only fathers and daughters. Mothers and anyone else who wanted to show up at the dance were certainly welcome to attend."

"Right now, the principal is in communication with those parents that raised concerns about the father-daughter dance, as well as the vast majority of the other parents at the school," York said.

The cancellation sent parents questioning the school's move to cancel the dance.

"There are father-daughter dances that are held at other schools, have been held at Richland One, and other districts here in Columbia, as well as across the country," York said. "In this particular instance at Brockman, there were some parents, fewer than 10, who raised concerns about father-daughter dance. So again they responded to that and the whole focus is to have a special occasion for all students and all parents, and we certainly hope that will take place next week."

Several parents, who are upset about the cancellation, are working on their own to host a dance on the same date that original one was scheduled.

On Tuesday, school officials said they may still host a dance, but put a different title on it, such as the Brockman Ball. It would be held May 13.

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