Pasco students protest new homecoming date

New Port Richey, Florida -- Several Pasco County high schools have scheduled their homecoming football games the same night as the homecoming dance, a potential nightmare for students.

Seniors at Ridgewood High School are up in arms and signed a petition to get the dance moved to a different day.

But after pressing the district, 10 News has learned the scheduling is not a mistake.

"Ridgewood has decided to go back to tradition," said Pasco County School District spokesperson Linda Cobbe.

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Ridgewood, River Ridge and Anclote high schools have moved their homecoming dances to the same day as the homecoming game.

"We're extremely concerned about this," said Ridgewood High senior class president Taylor Ney.

He and others at his school are worried athletes and fans will skip the dance to go to the game, or for fans, vice versa.

"They'll be sweaty, they'll be tired, and I know that the players especially will not want to go into that action for an hour and a half to two hours and then go to a dance for three hours," he said.

Students were worried enough to rally around a petition.

"One of our students went out for just a few hours and was able to collect 150 signatures advocating for a change of the date," Ney said.

When they brought that petition to Ridgewood Principal Angie Murphy, "I had the petition organizer and our football quarterback with us, and she still was not willing to change the date."

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10 News called Murphy to see how she reacted to her students uniting on the issue, but got no response.

On Twitter, Murphy took to individual students saying, "the date is set, get on board, be positive."

Cobbe said this isn't a directive from the district. Each school has chosen when to hold homecoming.

"Untill 1997, this school did have the homecoming game and the homecoming dance on the same night," she said.

To the district, the plan is to make homecoming a more casual event.

And one that's more affordable to students.

"Homecoming has become sort of a fall prom," she said.

She said tickets this year will be only $10 to $15.


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