October 27, 2021 – As we approach Halloween at the end of this week, we wanted to provide you with a few quick reminders about safety and appropriate costumes at school.
We know that Halloween can be a wonderful time of year for young people to explore creativity, play and share in a sense of celebration. And dressing up in costumes is a fun and joyful tradition for many kids and staff alike.
It’s also a time when we’re a little more aware of what we need to do to keep each other safe, in all ways. And those safety considerations that parents, students and staff need to consider at school are:
- Students in costume at school (where and when permitted) should be easily recognizable and/or be able to identify themselves to staff or other students when asked. No full-face masks permitted..
- As per the guidance from Dr. Bonnie Henry, Provincial Health Officer, costume masks are NOT a suitable replacement for masks being used to protect each other from COVID-19.
- We celebrate diversity and inclusion in New Westminster schools. Costumes that are offensive or in poor taste are not permitted … when selecting a costume, please consider whether the costume violates rights or appropriates identity, based on rights maintained under the Canadian Human Rights Act: race, ethnicity, religion, age, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, genetic characteristics, or disabilities.
- No replica weapons (guns, knives, etc) are allowed on school property.
- School codes of conduct must always be followed. This means continuing to act in respectful ways to peers and staff, and maintaining good care of school property … vandalism is never acceptable and is a crime.
- The possession or use of firecrackers or fireworks at school is strictly prohibited at all times.
Your school or classroom teacher may have provided additional information about how Halloween will be celebrated this year. Please contact the school if you have further questions.
As you consider your other plans over the weekend, please keep health and safety recommendations from local health authorities in mind, as we work together to keep everyone as safe as possible. Thank you for helping make sure Halloween continues to be a fun and safe opportunity for all staff and students.
– The New Westminster Schools team