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Altoona board votes to resume ’19 prom rules

The Altoona Area School Board voted 6-3 to revert to 2019 guest rules for this year’s prom at its regular meeting Monday.

The decision means students attending prom will be allowed to bring adult, non-student guests 21 and younger with proper clearances. All guests will be vetted by administration.

Votes in favor were from board President Sharon Bream, Dave Francis, Eric Haugh, Kelly Irwin Adams, Ron Johnston and Ed Kreuz.

Votes against were from board Vice President Frank Meloy, Mike Baker and Rick Hoover.

Assistant Superintendent Brad Hatch made the administration’s case against allowing adult, non-student guests at prom. Hatch argued that it is a simple matter of liability. If adult, non-student guests acted out of compliance with district policy, he said, the only recourse district officials would have would be police intervention. Board members deliberated at length as to whether the decision should be administrative or made by vote. After a second public comment period, which was necessary because the issue was a matter of new business, the board determined a vote was appropriate.

During the opening public comment portion of the meeting, AAHS senior Riley Whitaker addressed the board, asking that its members consider allowing adult, non-student guests. Her boyfriend, whom she hopes to attend prom with, is a former student now in college.

The previous rule disallowing these outside guests, she said, was “a bit of a frustration to the entire senior class.”

Mirror Staff Writer Andrew Mollenauer is at 814-946-7428.

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