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Christmas tree ban confounds students at Vancouver school

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For at least five years, students at Vancouver’s Kitsilano Secondary have been putting up and decorating a Christmas tree, but this year they were informed the tradition wouldn’t be allowed.

The students told CTV News that their request to trim a tree was denied by the school’s administration because it wasn’t inclusive enough.

“I don't know, it’s a funny rule in my opinion,” said student Thomas O’Brian.

To disabuse the school of its concerns, they suggested inviting students of different cultural backgrounds to decorate the tree, but that didn’t fly either.

Student Lucas Aloni, who is Jewish and celebrating Hanukkah, insisted he wouldn’t be offended by a tree at school.

“I don't understand why we wouldn't be allowed to have a Christmas tree, because that represents probably 90 per cent of the people in our school,” he said.

The decision is particularly puzzling for the student body, because there is a display in the school’s library showcasing other traditions like Kwanzaa and Hanukkah.

“If you have one, you should be able to have the other for sure,” said O’Brian.

After CTV News spoke with students on campus, a representative from the Vancouver School Board called on behalf of Kitsilano Secondary.

“We are aware there was misunderstanding at the school, which has been addressed,” said Patricia MacNeil.

She explained there was confusion over how Christmas tree decorations could be reflective of the diversity of the school, and that has since been resolved.

As a result, a Christmas tree will now be allowed in the school.

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