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NKHS band, choir still on task for trip to New York

POULSBO — Despite an increased fear of terrorism throughout the nation, the North Kitsap High School band and choir’s trip to Carnegie Hall in New York this month is on schedule — for now.

After a thorough review of the trip’s schedule and security precautions taken by the district administration, the students have been authorized to take the highly-anticipated trip.

A new North Kitsap School District policy states that it will not approve any out-of-state field trips if the nation’s security alert is in the “orange,” or “high” stage.

Even so, the district decided to review any trips that were approved before the policy was created, whether those trips were out of the district or out of the state.

Five out-of-district trips were reviewed, said Gregg Epperson, the NKSD’s executive director of student support services.

“We want to be as safe as possible,” he said.

One trip, which sent technology students to Bellingham, has already taken place; another, which will send a Future Business Leaders of America group to Spokane, has also been approved.

The trip to New York took

more work, with organizers researching safety precautions in the city and then presenting that information to the administration.

“We wanted to see the safety guidelines and procedures the advisors were putting in place,” Epperson said.

While the review convinced officials the New York trip could go forward, they reserve the right to call it off if the national situation grows dire, he added. If the nation’s alert level reaches its highest point, “red,” all out-of-district trips, including sporting events, will be postponed or cancelled.

Epperson said the district administration began designing the new policy before the war against Iraq began.

“If people are going (on a field trip), we want it to be planned, well organized and safe as possible,” he said.

The Kingston Junior High band’s trip to Disneyland, which is scheduled for later this spring, is still under review.

A letter was sent to parents to explain the new policy. It can also be viewed on-line at www.nskd.wednet.edu.

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