School Committee Seeks End To Ban On Father-Daughter Dances

CRANSTON, R.I. (September 25, 2012)--The Cranston School Committee in Cranston, R.I., is asking state lawmakers to change Rhode Island law to allow father-daughter dances and mother-son ballgames at schools.

Officials voted unanimously on Monday to approve a resolution asking for the change in state law.

District Superintendent Judith Lundsten put an end to the dances beginning this school year to comply with a state gender discrimination law.

Federal law prohibits discrimination in education on the basis of gender, but the law provides an exception for "mother-daughter" and "father-son" activities as long as "reasonable comparable activities" are provided to students of the other sex.

Rhode Island law does not offer such exemptions.

Civil libertarians complained on behalf of a single mother whose daughter had no father but who was barred from attending a father-daughter dance.

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