Should Sharon Schools Add More Diverse Holidays?

By Zoha Ali — Correspondent

The Sharon Public School Committee is considering adding more holidays to the school calendar to address concerns about inclusivity, sparking a debate among teachers and students about the best approach to take.

The expansion of school holidays would mean students would get out later in the summer. Many students and teachers say that some religions are not acknowledged when the calendar is planned.

Ms. Harding, a social studies teacher of freshman and juniors and a SHS graduate, says the school calendars should add more holidays because she has noticed other districts changing the amount of holidays they have.“Yes, I have heard that other school districts have moved to support more religions,” said Harding. 

The main Asian holidays that are not currently included are Lunar New Year, Eid and Diwali. As the Asian population has increased in Sharon Schools, the student body and the school committee have pondered why there aren’t more holidays that reflect the town’s diversity.

Charlotte Dussault, a freshman at SHS, would like to see more holidays added to the calendar. “I would like to see more holidays because we should be more inclusive, and Sharon is an inclusive town,” she said. 

Science teacher Mrs. Das says she would like to see all holidays eliminated and replaced with  excused absences. “There should be floating holidays or excused absences. We should eliminate all school holidays,” she said.

Ms. Bhalekar, a science teacher at SHS, would rather have the same amount of holidays that we have now. “In my personal opinion, keeping the holidays at the same number,” she said. 

Harding says that she is open to having more holidays but the current number of holidays is all she’s ever known. “That’s all I know because I went to high school here,” she said. 

Some say the downside of adding more school holidays is that everyone would have to stay later in the summer to account for those days. “Yeah, it’s just what you gotta do,” said Harding.

Freshman Laasya Allam understands wanting to enjoy summer but still wants the school calendar to be more inclusive. “Honestly I feel like the summer is a time to relax but if that means having more holidays and representing more cultures, then yes I would extend the year,” she said. 

Though Das prefers a no-holiday solution, she would like to see Diwali added if the School Comitee adds more holidays. “I would like to see Diwali off as a holiday,” she said. 

Harding says that the holidays we have should be fair whether or not we add more or exclude all. “If some people are impacted by this at least all people are,” said Harding.

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