Maries R-2 superintendent clarifies rumors about canceled 2020 prom

By Roxie Murphy, Staff Writer
Posted 8/13/20

BELLE — During the July 28 Maries R-2 Board of Education meeting, Superintendent Dr. Lenice Basham told board members she would like to clarify rumors going around about the canceled 2020 …

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Maries R-2 superintendent clarifies rumors about canceled 2020 prom

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BELLE — During the July 28 Maries R-2 Board of Education meeting, Superintendent Dr. Lenice Basham told board members she would like to clarify rumors going around about the canceled 2020 prom.

“Clarification about prom is needed,” Basham began. “The district-sponsored prom was set at the Bland Park pavilion based on the guidelines we received from the health department.”

The guidelines included the event be held outside and only students who were enrolled with the Maries R-2 district could attend due to contact tracing requirements. However, when the Bland fireworks show was rained out, and then rescheduled — it caused a scheduling conflict.

“The Bland fireworks were rescheduled for the same date as we had scheduled prom,” Basham said. “Mrs. Berkelman started trying to find an alternative setting, she was told that the green building at the park was already reserved for a parent-sponsored prom so that all students could attend the same prom.”

Basham said parents weren’t being held to the same rules as the health department. Students were able to bring a guest from a different school district, similar to how a normal prom would have been. Also, it seemed silly to the district to hold the school prom in the pavilion next to the parent-sponsored prom. All of these circumstances resulted in the cancellation of the district-sponsored prom, but not before the district discussed the decision with the parent-sponsored prom organizers.

“The people who had the private prom invited the remainder of the students to their prom,” Basham said. “We didn’t want anyone to believe we canceled and they scrambled to do something.”

Basham said the district understood that the students wanted to invite a date outside of the district residency, which was one of the primary reasons the parent-sponsored prom was scheduled.

“We were appreciative that the parents included all juniors and seniors to the already-scheduled parent-sponsored prom after our cancelation,” Basham said.

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