Parents at one of the country's elite schools say their children’s 'rite of passage' has been taken from them after it was decided to cancel the Year 12 formal.
Parents at one of the country's elite schools say their children’s 'rite of passage' has been taken from them after it was decided to cancel the Year 12 formal.

Parents fume after school cancels Year 12 formal

PARENTS at one of Brisbane's elite schools are fuming that the Year 12 formal has been cancelled due to coronavirus, saying that their children's "rite of passage" should come first.

Anglican Church Grammar School (Churchie) advised parents today that the 2020 senior formal had been scrapped.

However, there is a groundswell of support on a mother's closed Facebook site and elsewhere to pressure the East Brisbane boys' school into scratching the annual ball instead.

The ball, attended by cashed-up parents and supporters, is a lucrative money raiser. The senior formal is not.

Churchie parents say their children have been robbed of their “rite of passage” after the school’s Year 12 formal was cancelled. Picture: Liam Kidston.
Churchie parents say their children have been robbed of their “rite of passage” after the school’s Year 12 formal was cancelled. Picture: Liam Kidston.

One mother told The Courier-Mail it was ridiculous that the ball should take priority over the "making of men".

"The school is putting profit before the boys' rite of passage, and the formal should be held instead of the ball," she said.

"We understand coronavirus is serious, but we expected the formal to be postponed not cancelled outright with no room for discussion."

The Courier-Mail understands many parents have already appealed the decision to Rod Olsen, head of senior school.

A collective petition is also underway.

Mr Olsen emailed parents earlier today, saying: "We deeply regret to advise that due to the current situation regarding COVID-19, the decision has been made to cancel the 2020 senior formal.

"We appreciate this will cause great disappointment, however based on current government advice against large gatherings it would not be in the best interests of the boys and their guests to proceed with this event.

"The Churchie Ball has priority for rescheduling, and we encourage the seniors and their parents to take the opportunity to attend this event later in the year. The ball has currently been postponed from Saturday 9 May but will be rescheduled to a date in Term 3 or 4."

Several schools have postponed their senior formals to a later date.


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