District 200 Backs off Proposed Arts Policy
Pierce, Victoria, Daily Herald (Arlington Heights, IL)
Byline: Victoria Pierce Daily Herald Staff Writer
The Wheaten-Warrenville District 200 school board will revamp its proposed performing arts policy to make it less restrictive and give more discretion to teachers and principals in choosing what plays will be performed at the high schools.
The proposed policy had deemed it inappropriate for high school students to perform in works with significant references to alcohol, violence, sexual activity, drugs, drunken driving, cigarettes and all profanity.
Students, parents and theater professionals from across the country opposed the proposal, saying it was so restrictive that standards such as "Guys and Dolls," "West Side Story" and "Oklahoma!" would be forbidden. Even the works of Shakespeare would be suspect.
"It assumes that placing us in a protective bubble will help us develop morals," said Wheaton North High School student Luke Grobe, who was one of several people who spoke against the policy at a school board meeting Wednesday night.
Students need to be exposed to a wide range of ideas to learn to think for themselves, Grobe said. Performing arts are a good venue for that exposure, he added. …