Letter says students can’t make Mother’s Day gifts at school

One Mission school stops practice of creating gifts

A letter, sent home to parents of students at Albert McMahon elementary in Mission, says Mother’s and Father’s Day gifts will no longer be made at school.

Grade 1 and 2 students at Mission’s Albert McMahon elementary school won’t be bringing home any Mother’s or Father’s Day art this year.

A note issued to parents by the school says the primary team has met to discuss “core values.”

“In an effort to celebrate diversity, inclusivity and also nurture our students who are part of non-traditional families, we have decided to encourage those celebrations to take place at home,” the note reads.

It goes on to say students will not be making gifts at school to give on those two days.

Some parents not happy with the decision posted the note on Facebook and called both the school and school board.

Angus Wilson, superintendent of schools, said he first heard about the note on Wednesday morning.

“This is not a school-district or board-of-education-endorsed initiative,” he told the Mission Record.

Wilson said it was the decision of a small group of teachers at Albert McMahon.

“From a technical standpoint I have to mention that Mother’s Day, as with other holidays, is not actually an official part of the curriculum or any requirement. So teachers deciding to not make observations or activities based around it are not violating any rule or breaking any law,” said Wilson, who added teachers have the autonomy to make decisions about their class.

Wilson also said he thinks many people would like to have had some kind of conversation about this.

“I think people are upset. They sort of wonder if this is really the best direction to go when you are trying to address diversity.”

Comments on social media are mixed as some understand and support the decision while others call it ridiculous.