Last June, I received an email from a mom asking "Should I boycott the father-daughter breakfast this year?" She was, understandably, frustrated that her daughter's school chose to name events with exclusive language.
For the most part, schools don't mean any harm when they do this. Most of them are just deferring to names they've used in the past, and -- to their credit -- they're attempting to make sure that both parents attend at least once school event during the year, when possible.
Unfortunately, kids who don't have a father in their lives to bring to the "Father-Daughter Dance" or a mom to invite to the "Muffins with Mom" breakfast sometimes skip the event altogether because it feels awkward to be "the only" kid bringing someone else.
Now we know, as adults, that they're never "the only one." Fifty percent of the kids being raised in the U.S. today will spend some portion of their childhoods in a single parent household, so it's a broad leap to assume that every child has a mom or dad in their lives to bring to these events. Instead, schools need to craft new names for these events so that every child feels included, and we need to help them do it.
For example, ask your school to call it "Special Person's Day" or the "VIP Dance." For a complete list, read How to Rename School Events With More Inclusive Language.
What would you add to the list? Leave a comment below to share your ideas or tell our readers how you got your child's school to use more inclusive language.
Photo © Julie Toy/Getty Images