Skip to comments.District bans instrumental Christmas carols
Posted on 11/17/2004 5:26:11 PM PST by concretebob
© 2004 WorldNetDaily.com
A school district's long-standing policy banning Christmas songs with religious references is under scrutiny after officials clarified that it includes the prohibition of the performance of instrumental numbers without lyrics.
Instead of tunes about Jesus, and even Santa Claus, the 40-member Columbia High School brass ensemble will be limited for the first time to seasonal selections such as "Winter Wonderland" and "Frosty the Snowman," the Newark Star-Ledger reported.
Some parents of students in the South Orange/Maplewood School District in New Jersey are perplexed, including Eric Chabrow, whose son plays saxophone in the ensemble.
"There needs to be safeguards in school," Chabrow told the Newark paper. "But musical notes don't sanction religion."
Superintendent Peter P. Horoschak explained the brass ensemble's Christmas carols have slipped under the radar since the policy was adopted in the 1990s. A few have complained about it, he said, and this year the district is trying to be proactive.
"Rather than try to respond to all the various religions and try to balance them, it's best to stay away from that and simply have a nonreligious tone to them and have more of a seasonal tone," he told the Star-Ledger.
Rabbi Jehiel Orenstein of Congregation Beth El in South Orange, N.J., said instrumental renditions of religious holiday songs are fine as long as everyone is included.
"I love music," he told the Star-Ledger. "There are overtones to instrumental music. I just want to make sure it's inclusive, then we don't leave anyone out."
The New Jersey School Boards Association said its sample policy allows for performance of songs from various ethnic or religious groups as a way of broadening students' awareness, but districts are free to impose tighter restrictions.
"The law will permit a school-sponsored event to have religious music as long as it does not dominate the program, is not being used to promote religion and is presented for educational purposes to teach," Frank Belluscio, spokesman for the organization, told the Star-Ledger.
The South Orange/Maplewood policy was clarified in an Oct. 29 memo by Nicholas Santoro, the chair of the district's Fine Arts Department, who said songs such as "Winter Wonderland" or "Frosty the Snowman" are acceptable.
"Music centered on peace is also a nice touch," he wrote, according to the Newark daily.
The memo also states that printed programs for holiday concerts "must avoid graphics which refer to the holidays, such as Christmas trees and dreidels."
The newspaper interviewed Ellen Relkin of Maplewood, N.J., a parent of three children in the district who said the policy might be "a little excessive" but worries that people who don't observe Christmas, such as Jews and Hindus, might feel left out of the school activity.
Christmas in America becomes battleground
The students will be forced to convert to Islam, however.
Sorry, but this is WAY over the border - DEEP into absurd...
No worries....I don't think the irreligious left will be able to identify hymns by the tune.....
Borders? It is absurd. Oh well. The pendulum has just commenced its swing in the other direction. PC can't last forever.
Alright, class! Who's that humming? I want it to stop right now. If that humming doesn't stop you all have mandatory detention.
America is a Protestant Christian nation. All others should assimilate or be deported. Tolerance has gone far enough. If you came here only to suck the money, you can take your money and leave.
let's see, the school wants to have a christmas program so that the kids can show off their skills to their parents. the school district, however, will not let christmas songs played at the christmas program. why have the program at all?
They'd better be prepared to ban the Star Spangled Banner before their football games as well (assuming they have yet to ban football). Lyrics to the fourth verse:
Oh! thus be it ever, when freemen shall stand
Between their loved homes and the war's desolation!
Blest with victory and peace, may the heaven-rescued land
Praise the Power that hath made and preserved us a nation.
Then conquer we must,
for our cause it is just,
And this be our motto: "In God is our trust."
And the star-spangled banner forever shall wave
O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave!
Someone splain the Constitution to the rabbi.
i agree. cancel the program, and while you are at it, cancel the whole $#@!! public school system!
Uh, where do you get "Protestant"? I'm a Protestant myself but darned if I can find anything in the Constitution forbidding Catholicism. "Believe in the Lord Jesus Christ and ye shall be saved," the Bible says, and Catholics believe in Him just as you do.
Ah, the "spiritual" side of the Looney Left!
I suspect that the three legged tripod in the esteemed Dr. Ronald Ferguson's model is important in order to draw distinction from the formerly popular two legged tripod and the extinct four legged tripod....
The School District of South Orange and Maplewood is resolute in its commitment to educational excellence for all of our students. Within the conceptual framework of the Tripod Model, developed by Dr. Ronald Ferguson of Harvard University, the school district provides (1) a thorough curriculum aligned to state standards, (2) opportunities for teachers to expand teaching strategies and (3) cultivation of positive relationships in our schools and classrooms. The three legs of the tripod are interdependent and attention to all three is essential to achieving educational excellence.
Diversity is enjoyable isn't it? The ones I blame for this unhappy state of affairs are so called Christians. I'm not even religious, but the apparent total lack of fight in the so called 'Christian community' makes me sick! I guess they really do not believe in Christ-except maybe in their words.
Give me a break...............Christmas......(Christ)
In the sense that Christmas is a FEDERAL holiday that our government celebrates (no mail service, federal offices closed, banks and stock exchange closed), then by proxy, Hindus and Jews in America celebrate Christmas.
Again, Christmas IS a government holiday! First proclaimed by Abraham Lincoln in 1862. It's not just for Christians, but for all Americans.
Oooh! Ooh! Ooh! Mista Kotta! I know I know I know!
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.