By Gabriel Selbig
Walking up to the school doors on this past Monday, the wind was freezing and each step of the stairs was iced over. Only until after the full day of classes, I was dumbfounded by the realization that I had just attended school on Martin Luther King Day!
Almost feeling cheated, I recalled how year after year in Anchorage schools, the holiday had always given us a rare three day weekend. Martin Luther King Day was not celebrated by all but at least recognized.
When asked of our school’s under-recognition of MLK Day, Homer High Sophomore, Jake Worsfold had this to say, “It was Martin Luther King Day?” The holiday went unmentioned and seems as though the student body was not reminded until the following day.
Martin Luther King Day has been celebrated on the third Monday of every January since 1986. The day is celebrated all through the country, and gives workers and students alike a day off from their responsibilities. For those who truly celebrate, the day can be filled with remembrance and study of the courageous acts of the famed civil rights leader. “MLK Day is one holiday that should be recognized in every town of every state,” Worsfold retorted when asked exactly how he felt about the lack of celebration this past Monday.
Not only Homer High, but in fact, the entire Kenai Peninsula Borough School District has decided not to celebrate Martin Luther King Day. Principal, Dr. Gee explained that the district must minimize the amount of days that students do not attend school. This means some holidays are spent inside school. Some would inevitably ask what the huge deal is about kids missing another day of school due to a national holiday. Dr. Gee delivers the fact that “Many of our student body need to be done with school as soon as possible in the summer to start the fishing season with their families.”
Dr. Gee even stresses over his want to see a student committee organize some sort of in-school celebration for the holiday. May not be a full day off, but this way, the school truly celebrates the occasion.