09/28/2015 04:57 EDT | Updated 09/28/2016 05:12 EDT

Nova Scotia School Board Bans Dances For Middle Schoolers

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SYDNEY, N.S. — A school board on Nova Scotia's Cape Breton Island has banned school dances for students in grades six to eight.

The Cape Breton-Victoria Regional School Board says its administration made the decision after moving from a junior high to middle school grade configuration this school year.

Spokesman Donnie Holland says an expert on middle school curricula met with board officials this spring and suggested there are better activity options to create a positive school climate that are more age-appropriate.

Holland says grade six students, who can be 10 and 11 years old, also may not be developmentally ready for the social pressures related to relationships that surround dances.

He says the decision affects about 3,000 students in 15 schools.

The move is drawing criticism and has sparked an online petition, which had garnered nearly 1,400 signatures by Monday afternoon.

Holland says the board has heard some negative feedback about the change, but there are many other parents who support it.


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