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Proposal would ban balloon releases on EBR Schools property

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BATON ROUGE - A resolution discussed by local school officials Thursday would ban the mass release of balloons on East Baton Rouge campuses.

The filing, submitted by school board member Dawn Collins, would ban the ceremonial release of helium balloons from East Baton Rouge School property in conjunction with any official school activity. 

“I just saw it as increasing awareness of other alternatives for something that is detrimental to the environment," Collins said.

Many have criticized the practice of releasing balloons in mass due to the detrimental effects the balloons have on the environment when they eventually come back to the ground. Among the reasons listed for the ban are the waste of non-renewable helium and the "deadly effects on wildlife."

There was a slight back and forth at Thursday's meeting over the resolution.

“We’ re supposed to be here worrying about educational issues. We've got D and F schools, we’ re doing all these things trying to work on those. And I worry about diverting our attention,” school board member Michael Gaudet said.

“I think that this was a waste of our time to put this on the agenda. Because it’s already a part of our policy where we can’t bring balloons, flowers, on to the school grounds,” concerned parent Corhonda Corley said. 

The resolution was approved by the Committee of the Whole by a vote of six to three. It now moves on to the school board's regular meeting on Thursday, Dec. 12 for final approval.

You can read the full proposal here.


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