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Toronto District School Board

Halloween 2022: Cultures Are Not Costumes

Categories: Happenings @tdsb News

Each year, Halloween is marked in a variety of ways in school communities across the TDSB. Students can choose whether or not to participate in Halloween related activities.


As TDSB schools prepare for this day, there are often questions and concerns about Halloween costumes. To support safe, welcoming and dynamic learning spaces, educators are encouraged to engage students in critical conversations about cultural appropriation, stereotypes, and caricature. This includes reminding students and staff that certain costumes are viewed as offensive, inappropriate and/or discriminatory to many different cultures/peoples, and as a result can cause harm to members of that community and the TDSB community.


Additionally, school communities are reminded that it is important to be aware of the potential negative and triggering impact violent images and/or scenarios can have on students and families with varying lived experiences and backgrounds.


To assist with engaging in these conversations, the TDSB’s Urban Indigenous Education Centre, the Centre of Excellence for Black Student Achievement and the Equity, Anti-Racism, Anti-Oppression Department have resources to guide staff. In accordance with board policies conversations are guided by the values of respect and human dignity.