Webster school events to become gender-neutral
WEBSTER, N.Y. --- There’s a push for more inclusion at Webster Central Schools.
Events like the “Father-Daughter Dance" or the “Mother-Son Hike" will soon be called something different. The school district says it is a move to be gender-neutral because not every student has a mother or a father.
“You can’t take away everything,” said parent Laura Deninnis. “Eventually we’ll wind up with nothing.”
Deninnis, a mother of three, was disappointed when the PTSA of Webster Central Schools voted to change it up this year.
Gender will no longer be mentioned in event names at a handful of district elementary schools.
“Dances will still have to be re-branded,” said Carmen Gumina, Superintendent of Webster Central Schools. “So, instead of father-daughter dance, it’s a sweetheart-hero dance.”
Gumina says the idea has been in the works for about two years.
“We definitely had a few families that have said they were not a traditional family and feel as though they don’t belong there,” Gumina said.
Wadia Kuncher, a Webster grandmother, says it’s a decision that reflects the times.
“As long as they are safe and everything is good at home, that’s all that counts,” Kuncher said.
“I think things are changing nationally and the more inclusive the better,” said parent Lauren Zimmerman. “I think the change is a positive thing.”
Superintendent Gumina says the most change parents will see is the naming of certain events. He tells 13WHAM that the district will not cancel any yearly PTSA-sponsored events.
“Mother’s Day? or Father’s Day? Is that going to be next?,” Deninnis said.
“It is a different time and we’re looking to be as inclusive as possible,” Gumina added.
PTSA-sponsored events will begin its re-branding phase in 2018.