School Tells Girls They Can't Say No to Boys Who Ask Them to Dance

Kanesville Elementary School in Ogden, Utah, holds a sixth-grade dance on Valentine's Day each year -- and they're catching quite a bit of heat for a policy that recently came to light.

Natalie Richard was shocked when her daughter told her she was not allowed to refuse a dance with a boy at the upcoming event.

"The teacher said she can't. She has to say yes. She has to accept and I said, 'Excuse me?,'" Richard told CNN affiliate KSTU.

"It sends a bad message to girls that girls have to say 'yes' -- sends a bad message to boys that girls can't say 'no,'" Richard continued ."Psychologically, my daughter keeps coming to me and saying I can't say 'no' to a boy. That's the message kids are getting."

While a representative for the school district initially told reporters the rule was meant to promote kindness and inclusivity, the policy has since been changed due to backlash.

"In the best interest of our students, we are re-examining the procedures surrounding these dances and will make any necessary changes to promote a positive environment where all students feel included and empowered in their choices. We have advised our schools to eliminate any sort of language in the instructions surrounding these dances that would suggest a student must dance with another student," the Weber School District told CNN in a statement Monday night. 

Students at Kanesville Elementary will now be encouraged to fill out a dance card with names of classmates they'd like to dance with. Half the dancer selections are the girl's choice, the other half are the boy's choice, and students can't dance with the same person more than once. Additionally, students are now permitted to say no. 

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