The Dec. 21 story about the Bangor High School teacher ordered to take down a Hello Kitty Christmas tree included these words:

” … the school superintendent issued a statement saying culture, tradition and holidays must have an educational component and must be tied to the curriculum.”

I immediately had a knot in my stomach after I read that sentence.

I am a retired, well-respected, creative teacher who taught for 30 years during the golden years of teaching, before Learning Results and No Child Left Behind. I believed my classrooms were microcosms of the world. I believed I could change the world one child at a time.

My mind is swirling in a million directions when I think of all the times I took the opportunity to expose my students to a variety of cultures, traditions and holidays that weren’t “tied to the curriculum” but were educational and exposed them to something new and exciting.

What is happening to education when a simple pink Christmas tree is considered inappropriate in a classroom? I am pleased that I am not teaching today. I wouldn’t last a minute.

I’m glad that the tree has since been allowed back up, but what was the administration afraid of? Who can be offended by a small pink Christmas tree? I guess they wanted to stop it before something “worse” entered the school, like a large green Christmas tree.

Teachers are the backbone of our country; I can’t imagine what they have to contend with every day. I am sure there are much more important issues than a small pink Christmas tree with Hello Kitty ornaments.

Kudos to Hannaford: Last week their flier said, “Happy Holidays,” and this week it says, “Merry Christmas.”

Mary Louise Liucci-Smith