Pleasantville Dancers Disagree With Long Island School

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Lori Spada and Kristina Wozniak are outraged a Long Island school would cancel a kindergarten end of the year show.
Lori Spada and Kristina Wozniak are outraged a Long Island school would cancel a kindergarten end of the year show. Photo Credit: Sam Barron

PLEASANTVILLE, N.Y. -- The artistic directors of a Pleasantville-based dance studio are joining with the outrage aimed at a school on Long Island that may be pushing kids a little too hard.

Harley Avenue Primary School in Elwood has canceled its traditional end-of-year kindergarten show — saying the children can’t afford to take time off from getting themselves “college and career’’ ready.

“The reason for eliminating the kindergarten show is simple,” reads a letter sent by the principal  to parents last week. “We are responsible for preparing children for college and career with valuable lifelong skills and know that we can best do that by having them become strong readers, writers, coworkers and problem solvers.”

That did not sell with Kristina Wozniak and Lori Spada, the artistic directors of Artistry Dance Project.

"That's kind of absurd," Wozniak said. "Colleges want kids who are well-rounded who take on projects like dance or theater. It shows you have commitment and time management."

Spada said she thought it was a terrible decision by the school.

"You need to allow young kids to explore and have fun," Spada said. "Everyone loves live theater. It gives a chance to express themselves and use their imagination. We don't think many people will agree with this."

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