Homecoming dance stirs up controversy

by Ann Butler, Staff Writer

Back from its one year hiatus, the “infamous” homecoming dance calls acceptable student conduct of past years back into question.

This will be sophomore Adam Dietrich’s first homecoming dance. Dietrich, like many students, was not expecting the length of the mandatory contract.

“I think the rules are long, but justified. The homecoming dance is infamous for this sort of thing, but if you get wasted,  I think you might ruin it for other people who aren’t wasted,” Dietrich said.

Illicit alcohol use at the dance first became an issue in 2013 when several students came to the dance already inebriated. What worries administration is that any alcohol use creates a liability for the school.

“I mean when you have 300 kids and 10 kids that are knuckleheads,” Principal John Arlotta said “we should focus on the 200 and some students that did what they were supposed to do.”

Arlotta also addressed the increasing use of alcohol. He said, “We certainly have checks in place, we don’t have breathalyzers at the door or anything. Some students make bad choices, but they’re gonna have to pay the consequences for that.”

“I think it’s difficult to have a school sponsored event and have chaperones who are watching and having to supervise this bad behavior,” Katherine Bennin, one of the dance organizers said “I kind of think of it like ‘would you be behaving this way in front of your parents?’”

Because of the issues in the past, dance organizers “put down some extra clamps” in the contract in an effort to control some of the behavior, which led to poor ticket sales last year.

“I wasn’t that upset when it got cancelled last year, and it was unfortunate that it was cancelled and that no one cared or wanted to go. I didn’t go because my friends weren’t going, but it’s a little upsetting that no one in the whole school wanted to,” Dietrich said.

The planning committee has been working on the dance since last spring, and hopes its efforts will continue being well received “We’re happy that everyone can be on board. I’m optimistic, but we’ll see what happens this year,” Bennin said.

Arlotta also has a positive outlook for this year’s dance. He said, “This year’s going to be a great event and I’m excited.”