NEW JERSEY – After an outcry at a raucous public meeting over a previous decision to rename Columbus Day as Indigenous Peoples Day, the board of education at a New Jersey school district decided to strip all holiday names off of the school calendar.
So holidays like Thanksgiving will not be on the calendar and will simply be called “day off”. Jewish holidays of Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur were also stripped off the calendar by the move.
“If we don’t have anything on the calendar, we don’t have to have anyone be hurt feelings or anything like that,” board member Dorene Roche said.
The board members made the move in an effort to not offend anyone who feels slighted by days that reference a person, holiday, or ethnic group.
“I don’t think really it is the board’s responsibility to be naming these holidays. Either take them off or just adopt whatever the federal and state governments are doing,” board member Ronald Conti said before the vote.
More than 100 people reportedly had attended the Randolph Board of Education meeting on Thursday to protest the board changing the name of the Columbus Day Holiday.
It turned into a long public comment period and discussion by the board before the suggestion to strip names off the calendar.
After the unanimous vote, the board was met with shouts from the crowd.
“What did you just do? What just happened?” one man was heard shouting in an audio recording of the meeting.
Randolph Township is in Morris County and is about an hour west of New York City.