Calls for Christmas Go Unheeded in Massachusetts

The age-old debate of a school district labeling time off in December “Christmas break” continues to rage in Marshfield, Massachusetts. As we reported more than a month ago the school board already stuck a fork in Christmas, despite public outcry to their decision.

But residents in Marshfield are not giving up.

At a school committee meeting Tuesday night, several residents asked members to reconsider the September vote that changed the name “Christmas vacation” to “holiday break” on the calendar. The vacation week begins on Christmas Eve and ends the Monday after New Year’s Day.

Resident Elaine Taylor presented the committee with a petition signed by 443 people who want to see the vote reversed and the name “Christmas vacation” restored.

None of the school committee members responded to the residents’ request, which was presented during the public comment period of the meeting. Chairwoman Marti Morrison said the committee would hear residents’ concerns but would not engage in any dialogue on the matter.

Marshfield resident Gregory Hargadon said he sampled 85 people around town about the change to “holiday break” and not one person voiced support for it.
“This is Marshfield. It’s not Cambridge,” he said. “The overwhelming majority would like it changed back.”

He called the vote by members “an arbitrary decision based upon their own opinions,” and said the vacation is based around Christmas, which is a federal holiday whether or not one celebrates it.

“The holiday is called Christmas. That’s what it’s called,” he said. “It’s a race to be politically correct. … One person says something and you change it like that. If someone says they don’t like the American flag, are you going to remove that? Where does this end?”

The school board didn’t engage the conversation and there are no indications Christmas will be back on school calendars any time soon in Marshfield.

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