ORLANDO, Fla., Feb. 14 (UPI) -- Two Florida high schools are banning students from exchanging Valentine's Day gifts to prevent distractions from learning.
Principal Margaret Nampon of Lake Nona High School in Orlando said in a Wednesday message to parents that any students bearing Valentine's gifts such as balloons, flowers and teddy bears will be required to leave them in the office for the duration of the school day and any attempted deliveries will be sent away, the Orlando Sentinel reported Thursday.
The message said Valentine's gifts were banned "to maintain our instructional focus and avoid distraction."
Susan Storch, principal of Cypress Creek High School, said she is also banning gifts tied to the romantic holiday.
"Students are not allowed to bring balloons, flowers, stuffed animals or other Valentine's Day items to school," she said. "We cannot let it disrupt our academic environment."
Lake Nona parent Bonnie Shear said she disagrees with the principals.
"We have to bring joy and happiness back to our kids," she said. "Valentine's Day is a way to do that."
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