Copyright

Halloween in Schools: 19% of Survey Respondents Disapprove

Oct 30, 2009

Should Halloween celebrations be allowed in public schools? Should the celebration be known as 'Halloween' or a 'Fall Festival?' These are just two of the questions that many of today's schools are considering. A new survey posed the same questions to people around the nation and found that the majority have no problem with this popular holiday. However, a significant number of respondents--nearly 20 percent--disapprove of Halloween in schools.

View popular schools

halloween

Halloween is the United States' second largest commercial holiday

Although Halloween is widely considered to be a secular (non-religious) celebration, there are some groups that mistakenly associate the holiday with perceived religious overtones. The fact that many people have negative associations with the word and the idea of 'Halloween' have encouraged many schools around the U.S. to change the name of this holiday to 'Fall Festival.' Some schools have done away with the celebration altogether.

To determine the current status of public opinion, Rasmussen Reports conducted a national survey this week. Respondents were asked several questions about Halloween and Halloween celebrations. This is how the nation responded:

Many schools around the nation are beginning to eliminate the word Halloween and use the term 'Fall Festival' because of the religious overtones for Halloween. Is it a good idea to change the event to a Fall Festival?

halloween chart 1

The majority of respondents (66%) do not think it's a good idea to change the name 'Halloween' to 'Fall Festival.' Nineteen percent say a name-change is a good idea, but 15% are not sure.

Should public schools let children wear costumes to class to celebrate Halloween?

Halloween Chart 2

The majority of respondents (72%) also have no problem with Halloween costumes, saying that children in public schools should be allowed to wear costumes to class to celebrate Halloween. Only 18% feel children should not wear costumes, and 10% are not sure.

Find schools that offer these popular programs

  • Agriculture
  • Architecture
  • Biological and Biomedical Sciences
  • Business
  • Communications and Journalism
  • Computer Sciences
  • Culinary Arts and Personal Services
  • Education
  • Engineering
  • Legal
  • Liberal Arts and Humanities
  • Mechanic and Repair Technologies
  • Medical and Health Professions
  • Physical Sciences
  • Psychology
  • Transportation and Distribution
  • Visual and Performing Arts

Should public schools let children bring candy to school for Halloween?

halloween chart 3

The majority of respondents (69%) feel students should be permitted to bring candy to school for Halloween. Twenty-three percent disagree with this idea, and 8% aren't sure.

Halloween Costumes in Schools

halloween costumes

Some schools are encouraging less scary costumes.

Halloween and costumes have gone hand in hand for many years now, and as the Rasmussen survey indicated, most people do not have an issue with children dressing up to celebrate the holiday. However, there is a certain amount of debate as to what sorts of costumes students should be allowed to wear in the hallways of public schools. Under pressure from parents, many schools have begun prohibiting 'scary' costumes as well as costumes that can be considered 'gross' or 'saddening.'

In some schools, including a district in Illinois, students are asked to dress as historical characters or fall food items, such as pumpkins and carrots. Other schools, including institutions in Texas and California, are encouraging 'positive costumes' that do not depict traditional characters, such as witches, vampires, or ghouls. Others still, have banned Halloween costumes altogether, insisting that school is not the place to dress up for the holiday.

Are all of these changes and restrictions another example of how society can turn harmless fun into something negative? Or is it right to ban Halloween from schools and restrict it to individual homes?

For now, it seems that most of the nation still wants to see Halloween in public schools. But who knows what the future will hold for this ever-evolving annual celebration.

Next: View Schools

What is your highest level of education?

Some College
Complete your degree or find the graduate program that's right for you.
High School Diploma
Explore schools that offer bachelor and associate degrees.
Still in High School
Earn your diploma or GED. Plan your undergraduate education.

Schools you may like:

Popular Schools

The listings below may include sponsored content but are popular choices among our users.

    • BA: Criminal Justice
    • BA: Criminal Justice - Criminalistics
    • BA: Liberal Studies
    • BA: Psychology
    • BA: Psychology - General
    • BS: Computer Science
    • AA: Criminal Justice
    • AA: Liberal Arts
    • AA: Business Administration
    • AA: Information Technology
    • AA: Cybersecurity

    What is your highest level of education completed?

  • What is your highest level of education?

    • MSHS Medical Laboratory Sciences
    • MSHS in Immunohematology and Biotechnology
    • MSHS in Molecular Diagnostic Sciences
    • MSHS in Translational Microbiology
    • MA in Education and Human Development in Secondary Special Education and Transition Services
    • MA in Education and Human Development in Special Education for Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Learners
    • BSHS in Clinical Operations and Healthcare Management
    • BSHS in Medical Laboratory Sciences
    • BSHS in Biomedical Informatics

    What is your highest level of education?

    • Master of Business Administration
    • Associate in Business Administration Management
    • Associate in Medical Assisting
    • Associate in Network Administration
    • Paralegal
    • Diploma in Accounting
    • Diploma in Business Administration
    • Diploma in Medical Office Professional
    • Diploma in Pharmacy Technician
    • Certificate in Phlebotomy
    • Diploma in Medical Billing and Coding

    What is your education level?

    • MA in Communication
    • Master of Liberal Arts
    • MA in Science Writing
    • MS in Applied Economics
    • MS in Geographic Information Systems
    • MS in Bioinformatics

    What is your highest level of education?

    • Automotive Technology
    • Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning (HVAC)
    • Electrical/Electronics

    What year did you graduate High School / Receive GED?

    • Master of Science in Nursing - Doctor of Nursing Practice Path, Executive Leader Specialization
    • Doctor of Nursing Practice
    • Master of Science in Nursing - Doctor of Nursing Practice Path
    • Master of Science in Legal Studies
    • MS in Psychology
    • MBA
    • Master of Public Health
    • MBA - Human Resources
    • MBA - Health Care Management
    • BS in Liberal Studies
    • BS in Business Administration
    • Bachelor of Science in Business Administration, Investment Career Focus Area
    • BS in Liberal Studies Leadership
    • BS in Nutrition Science
    • BSFIN in Accelerated MS Finance
    • AAS in Business Administration - Business
    • AAS in Legal Support and Services
    • AAS in Business Administration
    • AAS in Business Admin-Office Management
    • AAS in Criminal Justice
    • AAS in Accounting
    • Medical Office Administration Certificate
    • Human Services Certificates in Child and Family Services
    • Pathway to Paralegal Postbaccalaureate Certificate
    • Medical Billing and Coding Certificate
    • Family Nurse Practitioner Graduate Certificate
    • Executive Leader Graduate Certificate

    What is your highest level of education completed?

    • Doctor of Strategic Leadership - Healthcare Leadership
    • Ph.D. in Organizational Leadership
    • Ph.D. in Organizational Leadership - Ecclesial Leadership
    • Ph.D. in Organizational Leadership - Entrepreneurial Leadership
    • Ph.D. in Organizational Leadership - Individualized
    • Doctor of Strategic Leadership - Global Consulting
    • Master of Arts in Communication
    • Master of Arts in Communication - Political Communication
    • Master of Arts in Communication - Strategic Communication
    • Master of Arts in Government - Political Communication
    • Master of Arts in Journalism
    • Master of Arts in Law - Business
    • Bachelor of Arts in Communication Studies
    • Bachelor of Arts in Communication Studies - Rhetoric and Public Culture
    • Bachelor of Arts in Communication Studies - Strategic Communication
    • Bachelor of Arts in English - Communication
    • Bachelor of Arts in Leadership Studies - Criminal Justice
    • Bachelor of Science in Business

    What is your highest level of education completed?

  • What is your highest level of education?

    • Master of Science in Finance
    • Masters of Professional Studies in Technology Management
    • Master of Professional Studies in Real Estate

    What is your highest level of education completed?

Find your perfect school

What is your highest level of education?