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TAKE Me for a Twirl

posted Jun 12, 2010, 10:44 AM by Jason Quick   [ updated Nov 2, 2011, 5:22 AM by Sites Admin ]
~ Deanna (Jenkins) Nichols (Class of '89) 

Take Me for a Twirl was an appropriate name; the fitting description for Faith’s first-ever on campus dance. Following this year’s traditional Sadie Hawkins Banquet in February, the dance was offered as an optional after-party for participating students and staff.

Over recent years, Faith’s stance on dancing has changed. Many people, young and “not-so-young” have welcomed the opportunity to be a little more footloose. Is this new freedom to groove a positive change? Students think so. In fact, one of the reasons for the change resulted from a student initiative. Deputy Superintendent, Mike Hause explains that the school’s policy on social dancing was reworded in the code of conduct portion of the Parent Handbook several years ago (early 2000s) to better reflect an understanding of what dancing was and was not. This has allowed the Administration to address the student initiative, towards making the change.

There was an age in the history of Faith Academy when dancing seemed taboo. Students and faculty were asked to abstain from the practice, due to what it might convey. Former students will recall signing a code of conduct, vowing to avoid social dancing in any context. Faith’s present day Code of Conduct reads differently now: “I will not participate in dancing that is [suggestive] in movement or attire.” This comes into agreement with the understanding that some dancing is actually ok.

There is now more of an emphasis to promote appropriate styles of dance, with opportunities to learn proper moves, timing and footwork. Square dancing on the covered playground has already been part of Elementary P.E. Middle- schoolers have been learning cultural dance, like Scottish Line Dancing taught by teacher, Deb Millier and Hip-hop. High school drama students have had occasion to learn dance for the stage in musicals like “The King and I” and “Fiddler on the Roof”. Why not bring dance from the stage to the gymnasium floor where it can be enjoyed in an atmosphere of fun?

It seems teachers have students and administration to thank in bringing about this allowance. Following their End-of-Year Staff Banquet, with a Western Theme, staff helped clear out tables and chairs for a little Country-Line Dancing with Elementary Principal, Steve Taylor, leading. Kindergarten teacher Samantha Zipp, had this to say about Steve’s job on the dance floor, “I think he makes a great principal and dance caller. We need more square dances!”

Is this new change a good one? Will it help the school or perhaps take us down a wrong track? Most think it will not. Although the decision was not easy to make with respect to those who may hold differing views, it was made in light of what people currently believe about dancing and the fact that it can be done in appropriate ways and in an appropriate setting.


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