High School

High school's dating assignment causes uproar among parents

  • Scan of the dating assignment given to students at Highland High School in Utah.

    Scan of the dating assignment given to students at Highland High School in Utah.  (FOX13)

  • Scan of the dating assignment given to students at Highland High School in Utah.

    Scan of the dating assignment given to students at Highland High School in Utah.  (FOX13)

Parents at a Salt Lake City high school said they were outraged after their children in the 11th grade were assigned to go on a $5 date -- and got pointers over how boys and girls needed to act.

The assignment came in a required “adult roles and financial literacy class” on Monday, FOX13 reported.

Some of the bullet points for girls said things like “don’t waste his money,” “if you think you’re fat keep it to yourself,” “be feminine and lady like” and “don’t correct his personal habits.”

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Boys were told to inform their dates about what they planned to order so the girls would “have a guide in order,” and to not “gripe about the money you’re spending or don’t have.”

Jenn Oxborrow, whose daughter was in the class, said the assignment “blew me out of the water.”

Oxborrow said the assignment went too far and that the assignment represented old-school thinking. She said her daughter was frustrated and upset.

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“I couldn’t believe some of the questions and guidelines,” she told FOX13. “The whole premise of the assignment was ridiculous.”

She added that her daughter “sent me a picture of it immediately when she got it and said 'I’m pretty frustrated with this. I’m upset. I think it's unfair and I’m worried about some of my classmates that might not identify with traditional gender roles.'”

The assignment appeared on a statewide website where teachers could download quizzes, lesson plans and assignments for use in their classrooms, FOX13 added.

“We found it, we have deleted it from the website and are looking into how it got there so we don’t repeat the same mistake again,” Mark Peterson, Public Relations Director for the Utah State Board of Education, told the station. “We really don't have business whether or not boys and girls should be kissing on a date in a financial literacy class.”

Highland High School’s principal has not commented.

School district officials said they spoke to the teacher, who was said to have been mortified and regretted any harm she may have caused, FOX13 reported.

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Oxborrow, who complained to the school district, said she was glad the assignment was removed, but was worried about the students in the class – especially those who identify by another gender or are attracted to someone of the same sex.

“We're a state that has such a high rate of teen suicide and so many issues in regards to gender identity can cause depression for teenagers. I was really sad once I thought about it,” Oxborrow said.

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