At Fort Worth in the USA, schools are not allowed to have Santa and gifts in classrooms – decorations are only allowed if ‘part of the curriculum’ and parties only if for educational purposes.
Keeping distractions (like an actual visit from Santa) out of class time – absolutely sensible and reasonable.
Keeping gifts out because they might have to include a religious message? Santa is not truly part of any religious Christmas. Surely if a child chooses to give a gift with a religious message that is the child’s choice? And the child may give a religious message to friends aside from a gift or Christmas card anyway. I am against religion in state schools (so yah Fort Worth for keeping the two separate) but don’t see that Santa and gifts need to be banned – just ban religious images and stories in the classroom.
Just let the kids have a bit of fun and enjoy the magic of Santa and Christmas – why stop them just because some adults are scared of religious connections causing trouble?
Very glad my kids are allowed to have Santa and Christmas at school – could do without excessive gift giving but that’s another topic altogether! How would you feel if your kids had this stuff banned? How would you have felt as a kid without Santa and cards allowed at school?