Directors of a church-operated school in Tarzana voted to uphold a ban on images of Santa Claus in the classroom despite a parent's protest that St. Nick is a positive role model for youngsters.
School officials said after the Monday night vote that that they wanted to uphold the school's primary mission, teaching students the religious nature of Christmas. "We are not against Santa Claus," said James Dean, pastor of the Lindley Avenue Baptist Church, which sponsors the school. "We have a pro-nativity policy because our obligation is to tell that story."
On Monday morning, Bob Buckley, whose 4-year-old son, Brendan, attends the school, donned a Santa suit and marched outside the school. "My feeling is that Santa is a positive role model. He is one of the first adults outside of the home that children grow to trust," he said.