Updated: Friday, 19 Feb 2010, 10:40 PM EST
Published : Friday, 19 Feb 2010, 10:01 PM EST
ELWOOD, Ind. (WISH) - Most parents agree that matchmaking Web sites and surveys are games mainly adults should play, but some say Elwood Community Schools has been getting students in on the action.
Parent Michelle Everett says her 11-year-daughter recently brought home a survey from school. The survey is a fundraising tool used by the school corporation for the middle school drama club. Students pay a buck or two each and a computer matches compatible boys and girls in grades six through 10. The more they pay the more matches are found.
"I don't believe that at 11 years old a school should be promoting opposite sex matching," said Everett. "A tenth grader matched with a sixth grader? And the school promoting it and it's inappropriate."
What's more upsetting to Everett is that she found the survey in her daughter's book bag without a parental consent note like most school fundraising campaigns.
"When I started to read it and it said a list of the members of the opposite sex that are the most compatible for you, that you can buy the list. I thought ‘red flags, red flags’," said Everett.
But despite that, the superintendent calls the survey a harmless, non-invasive fundraiser and that they've been doing for the past 15 years.
"I approved this fundraiser on February 1st and I knew about the content of the survey and it's just a good way for kids to have a little fun. It's a voluntary survey," said Thomas Austin, Superintendent of Elwood Community Schools.
Austin also says he hadn't gotten any official complaints from parents.
Everett said she did call and complain. Ultimately, she's concerned about pregnancy rates in the district.
"I think it is promoting kids to be with the opposite sex at a young age," Everett said.
Superintendent Austin said students have already completed the survey for this term. While he continues to defend it, he says if enough parents complain about it, they'll consider dropping it in the future.
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