New Ways to Celebrate Birthdays

July 2015

Dear Clinton Parents/Guardians:

“Happy birthday!”  Those words have special meaning for anyone at any age but especially for children in elementary school.  To add to the significance, many Clinton parents/guardians have made a routine of coming to school on birthdays to have lunch with their child and/or visit in the classroom for a short time.  We are pleased parents take the time to make these visits.  As a staff, we help students celebrate birthdays by announcing their names over the school intercom.  In the classroom, teachers use a variety of methods to honor student birthdays.

Our goal is to build on the successful practices that make birthdays special while also assuring students’ safety, adherence to cultural expectations, and the maintenance of a regular school routine.  Safety can be an issue with some food items.  For example, students with egg allergies would not be able to eat most varieties of cupcakes or cookies.  In some instances, classmates may feel excluded if food items are shared that do not meet the dietary requirements of their culture.

For these reasons, we are committed this year to replacing foods (cupcakes, cookies, juices, etc.) as a means of celebrating birthdays with non-food items.  If you would like to bring a non-food item to celebrate a birthday, please contact your child’s teacher several days in advance to schedule your visit.  The early contact would also provide an opportunity to decide on a non-food birthday item appropriate for classmates.

I invite you to join this school-wide commitment to celebrate student birthdays with non-food items.  Please contact me with any questions you may have regarding school birthday celebrations.

Terry Neddenriep, Principal