Society

Connecticut School Bans Valentine’s Day Candy, Pushes New Wellness Policy

| by Khier Casino

An elementary school in Connecticut will not allow children to share sugary treats or have a party this year during Valentine’s Day.

According to FoxNews.com, Harwinton Consolidated School’s principal sent out an email to parents asking them not to attach candy to Valentine’s Day cards when sending them with their kids.

“We are asking for parents/guardians to be sure that food products of any kind are not a part of your child’s Valentine’s cards,” Principal Megan Mazzei wrote to parents. “We are working to encourage healthy practices as well as manage food choices in classrooms where food allergies are present in order to maintain a safe environment.”

Even the pastel-colored candy hearts with a message such as “Be Mine” and “Kiss Me” are not allowed to be shared.

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Stacey Sefcik, whose son and daughter go to the school, told Fox News in an interview: “Last year the kids came home with tons of Valentine’s cards with pieces of candy attached. It was never an issue.”

In her son’s fourth grade class, the annual Valentine’s Day party was cancelled by the teacher, who emphasized the new policy in a letter to parents. The teacher noted that children could exchange cards, but there would be no festivity.

Sefcik’s daughter’s second-grade class was more easygoing, with “healthy snacks” such as popcorn and fruit as an alternative to sugary treats.

“I’m totally fine with teaching nutrition and encouraging healthy choices,” Sefcik said. “I applaud their intent, but the execution has a lot to be desired. It’s just candy for one day.”

Instead of a party, the school suggests that children share things like “pencils, stickers, temporary tattoos, homemade cards or other crafts.”

The Huffington Post reported a similar story about Horace Mann School in Newtown, Mass., where in 2012 the elementary school’s principal sent out a letter to parents asking them not to send candy with their kids on Valentine’s Day, suggesting instead to hand out crafts like origami. Candy also violated the school’s food-sharing policy, and efforts to teach students how to eat healthier.