Ohio Christian school tells student to skip prom

That’s a pretty extreme exagerration to say that “most” public school kids use the prom to have sex and get drunk. That makes it sound as of the prom is a ticket to a school sponsored orgy. Obviously, drinking and sex are not allowed in the prom facilities. In my experience, public school districts (from good districts, at least) do a lot to make sure the prom is safe and the rules are followed.

The adolescents who make the choice to drink and have sex on the night of the prom are more often than not making a choice they’ve
already made before. The prom is certainly not the cause of those choices.

And I strongly disagree that “most” kids make these choices in public schools. Most of them maintain the personal standards and lifestyle choices they’ve already chosen by the time their senior prom rolls around.

These are people who are right on the threshold of adulthood. They deserve to be respected, and to be acknowledged as capable of making the right choices for themselves. They deserve to be allowed to celebrate graduating from high school.

My 19-year old daughter had already developed a strong sense of character and an aversion to drinking or drugs by her senior year of high school. She also has a stable, moral, respectful relationship with her long term friend-turned-boyfriend, and plans on marrying him after college. I would never dream of being so disrespectful to my daughter that I followed her and her boyfriend to prom in a condescending, accusatory manner, waiting for her to do something impulsive and self-destructive.

If I have to do that, then there’s something seriously wrong. I respect my daughter. I don’t own her choices. She owns her choices. I hope she has internalized what I have taught her over the years, but in the end I can’t control her choices.

In this situation, though, I don’t know that the boy has a right to complain since he agreed to these bizarre rules before enrolling in the school. If I were his father, I’d tell him I don’t agree with the rules but we have to follow them because we agreed to do it.

It is also interesting that people here glossed over the fact that for many, if not most kids, prom at a public school involves inebriation and pre-marital sex.

And it is interesting that you’ve glossed over the fact that this happens despite the best efforts of public schools to prevent it. School districts across New Jersey charter buses so that they can control when students arrive at and leave the prom. Some of them breathalyze kids coming in. Others offer after-prom parties on school grounds that run until the wee hours of the morning, so that students aren’t throwing parties on their own.

The only way a school can totally prevent is by doing one of two things:

  1. Not offering a prom at all, and thus punishing the silent majority by denying them a fun opportunity.

  2. Adopting the invasive and creepy rules of this school.

i agree with this completely.

and as to the drinking and sex stuff, i grew up in an almost entirely Catholic town(90%+). every year after prom there was a Mass at 12:30AM. everybody always goes, Catholic or not still all fancied up. it didnt eliminate the after prom drinking parties, but it did cut down on the number of parties and the number of people going. it also cut down on pre-prom drinking, since we knew we had Mass afterwards.
-and for the record it was a public school, no Catholic school in town.

Is this situation any different than that Lutheran high school in California which expelled two girls for having a lesbian relationship? The students in both cases agreed to follow the schools religious beliefs. Does it matter what those beliefs are, if the students first consented and then later chose to break the rules?

How so? If a student agrees to follow a Muslim school’s rules, is it any different if they choose to follow a Baptist school’s rules?

Apparently you missed my comment on whether or not it was appropriate to follow the rules.

I was not commenting on following rules. Yes, if you agree to follow rules that you don’t agree with, you are still obligated to follow them.

I was giving my opinion of the school rules. I think the rules are counter-productive. I doubt that they have resulted in many happy, well-adjusted, sincere adults who make moral choices because they want to make moral choices. Just my opinion.

Okay, but the school rules are simply following the rules of their religion. Baptists forbid dancing. It’s fine that you disagree with their religion. I’m sure there are lots of religions we disagree with, and I bet those who run the school disagree with the Catholic Church on a number of things, too.

If someone doesn’t agree with a religion or its rules, don’t attend their religious school.

The point IMHO is that they gave their word and that should have been the end of it. A person is only as good as the integrity behind their word of honor.

We agree that because the family agreed to these rules they should follow them.

As for it being part of the Baptist religion to prohibit dancing, not exactly. Not in the black and white way that Jewish and Muslim people have dietary laws, anyway.

Some Southern Baptist groups prohibit dancing on the basis of their own personal judgements. I am not sure if there are ruling policies or judgements that are published. That was why I mentioned Arkansas. In the town that my grandparents are from, which is a mountain settlement, the public school is run like a religious school and dances have been prohibited for years. It’s also a dry county.


if you cant handle it for simple things like this how to you teach a kid not to speed, not to do drugs, lie, cheat, steal kills? now i dont think going to prom leads to all that, but i do think everytime we do what we want over what we should it makes it easier to do it again the next time.

I am basing this on evidence of growing up in a major public high school (graduating class 700) in the 90’s, early 2000’s, and what evidence I have of others whom I know attending college and discussing what their proms were like. My school was a “good” school in a “good” district as you put it, but I certainly would not trust my child to grow in holiness at a public school because of all the crazy temptations there are. And you mention orgies, in fact yes, there were some students involved with orgies at my high school. I didn’t say I know absolutely that most are doing it, but very very many, that is why I said, “many, if not most.” It is very ceremonial for people to go to after prom parties and get drunk, and have sex. . And please dont think I am accusing your children.

I am sure some students are able to resist temptations, but why would you let them be exposed to it in the first place?

That public schools can’t prevent this from happening makes the Baptist’s point even more. I think it is weird to say dancing is a sin, but isn’t it better to deny a morally neutral thing to someone than expose them to a great temptation for the sake of entertainment?

Since the student signed the paper agreeing to follow the rules, he should follow the rules. That, however, does not make the rules right. Such extreme legalism is just plain ridiculous and I am not certain that the school even has the right to enforce such rules outside of school property.

Because an Islamic school possibly teaches that violent overthrow of government is an acceptable thing if it is not Islamic. Sharia Law. But that is way off topic.

It’s just been my experience that for the majority of adolescents, teaching inner discipline through reason, respect, and communication works a lot better than imposing a lot of external controls. Very soon the senior in high school will be 21. What will ensure they have a mature attitude about drinking and sex? If that young adult has spent their whole life having their choices controlled, they may not understand on an emotional level the reasons why they’ve been prohibited from doing certain things. On the other hand, if their parents have taught them certain values, and then gradually trusted them to be independent and make their own decisions as they get older, they will understand how to act in the real world. Facing and preparing for temptations is a part of life. By the time a kid is 18, they should be capable of making a healthy decision. Some of this depends on the kid, of course. For example, I don’t let my 12 year old use the computer at all. I have an external control there because she has shown me she doesn’t have the maturity to resist the temptation to break the rules about communicating with strangers. So, she’s got a strict external control there until she’s more mature. If I had a 17 or 18 year old with poor impulse control and some other emotional issues that made them vulnerable to the temptations of the prom, I’d not allow that child to go. But in general, for most intelligent and well-balanced kids, it’s counterproductive to deny them the opportunity to face situations in life where they meet people with different values and have to make good decisions.

When they become adults, they have to rely on their internal values, not external rules.

The question is whether or not the signed rules included expulsion for actions that violate the rules off school property.

Case in point: A young man I know attended a fundamentalist Baptist University that had a rather extensive set of rules. One of the rules was no drinking, on or off campus. Any students (of age or not) returning to campus drunk could be expelled. If the university found out anyone (of age or not) was drinking off campus, that student could be expelled.
The young man I speak of went out to a bar, with a few friends, to celebrate his 21st birthday. Each had a single beer and returned to campus. Another student saw these students leaving the bar, and reported it to an RA, who passed it up. This young man took the wrap for the other young men, and was expelled from the school.

So- if the high school’s rules extend to punishment for activities off school property, than they can expel him. If the school does not include the stipulation in the rules contract, the students are not able to be punished.

i think that is a bit over simplified. just because the rule doesnt say it doesnt apply off campus doesnt mean he cant be punished. now if it said it only applied to on campus then i would agree he’d be in the clear. however i doubt the school would be making such a stink about it if that were the case. odds are they have a lawer, or at least have their policies reviewed before implementing them so im betting they know they can do this.

this is all assuming he goes. he may change his mind on his own, or they are just kids it wouldnt be unheard of for them to breakup by then.

I apologize. I did use the term “our Catholic schools” in my post, but apparently, this did not make it clear that I was referring only to the Catholic schools in our diocese.

I think it would be hypocritical of parents to allow their children to do something outside of the classroom that the bishop has forbidden in the classroom. If it’s wrong, it’s wrong.

This has nothng to do with legality but morality, and it is immorral to give your word in a agreement then break it, since keeping the word doesn’t not break any law nor harm any others… The kid’s dad was wrong, and gave him a bad precedence to live by, and that is it ok to break an agreement and blame the other party for your dishonesty.

The rightness or wrongness of the school’s beliefs concerning dancing has nothing to do with what was the right choice of action for the kid or the parent. That is all just a distraction to the real issue.

Exactly, what someone does away from school is none of their business. I do blame the parents though for sending him to a school with a bunch of nutjobs who force their misinterpretation of the Bible on others…


§ Okay, question: What if the sweet boy signed an affidavit before an official stating that he will not ♪dance, \m/ listen to rock music, <>handholding, :~* kissing…then can he go? ::smiley:

Not to be mean and I don’t want to sound like I am, but it is really ashame that our children suffer due to adult making decisions banning gifts that God provided us. Dance~talent (even David danced)…Rock music~style of choice (Christian Heavy Metal Bands)…Handholding~sign of affection…Kissing~so it’s wrong to kiss your kids, Mom and Daddy, Grandparents? Why not ban hugging also?:shrug:

To reiterate and make this more concrete. The rules are agreed at the boy’s school. Do they apply also to the girl’s school? And the Principal signed permission for the boy to attend prom. Afterwards the Principal presents the issue to the school commitee?? :confused:

Above all, if I were Frost’s Daddy, I would hold the Principal accountable for signing permission and the Principal not sticking to his guns.

Love you guys! :heart:♪♫

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit www.catholic.com.