Though for some teenagers school dances bring out their inner wallflower (they are extremely awkward), for others, it's their time to shine on the dance floor with their friends and have a blast. Every school has dances — homecoming, prom, etc. — but one school in Gorham, ME, is being forced to say goodbye to theirs because of one dance move.
There's the electric slide, the cha-cha, the running man, and then, there's grinding — where someone essentially backs their rear end up against their date's groin, who then reaches around to hold onto their hips. The GHS principal, Chris Record, sent out a letter to parents explaining that grinding was the reason he'd be canceling the upcoming homecoming dance and replacing it with a bonfire — a "more inclusive, safe, and fun" activity.
The letter outlines several reasons he chose to make this unpopular decision:
It is by no means the students' fault, but the dancing they have witnessed on MTV/VHS/movies involves primarily only sexually suggestive grinding.
GHS administrators do walk through this mass of people and chaperones are present, but it is still very difficult to monitor/control, even with increasing the lighting and asking DJs to be careful with music choices.
What regularly happens at dances in terms of student contact would never be condoned during the school day.
Students are rightfully upset, and senior Billy Ruby said of the bonfire, "Word around the school is no one is going to go, and it's going to be lame." Junior Kiara Sweet suggested, "If there's people grinding, kick them out. Don't ban the whole thing." But despite students being disappointed, Record said, "I'm sorry. . . . but my number one job is to keep students safe."
Record said that though homecoming has been canceled, prom will still happen at the end of the year, "The student decorum at prom has always been better because they are dressed up, it is a classier event, they have paid significant money to be there, the dance has fewer students to monitor, there are far fewer younger students, and multiple other reasons, as well."