Students Barred From Entering Homecoming Dance Past 8 PM


Tanmay Lakhotia

Irvington Principal Nathania Chaney-Aiello holds back late entrants at the Victory Tunnel entrance.

UPDATED 10/29: Students arriving after 8 PM to the Irvington Homecoming Dance were reportedly barred from entering the Courtyard, with the Victory Tunnel bolted shut.  

Irvington Principal Nathania Chaney-Aiello policed the entrance, refusing to let students in regardless of whether they had purchased a ticket. She also made it clear that students who were not allowed in would not receive refunds. 

The rationale behind this decision seemed to rest upon the administration having sent an email informing prospective attendees to arrive between 7 and 8 PM; however, that email appears to not have reached the entire attending student body. Members of ASG leadership, including some who planned the event, were among those stuck outside. The exact number of people locked out is currently unknown. 

With Homecoming being the first dance since the 2019-2020 school year, many people either had forgotten this rule or were simply unaware of it. 

“Because we haven’t had a dance in two years, we didn’t do a good enough job making sure everyone knew all the details and it became a problem,” ASG Advisor Ryan Willer stated. “We need to do a better job communicating what the expectations are and [communicating] the best course of action if someone is in a situation where they cannot follow the rules.”

Given only 4 weeks to plan the dance, ASG’s small time frame may have contributed to the lack of communication. 

“In the excitement of having a dance, we didn’t do a good job in making sure everything was lined up and ready to go,” stated Willer. “We have to remember that people don’t know [the usual rules] anymore.”

According to Willer, Homecoming’s policy was not new; the 8 PM deadline has been in place for previous dances. 

“That’s been the policy at every school dance since I’ve been here,” said Willer. “Generally, [students being locked out] hasn’t really been an issue because we haven’t had people arriving after 8 o’clock. [Last Homecoming], no one came after 8 o’clock—to my knowledge.”

He maintained that those that purchased tickets online were required to fill out an agreement form stating the deadline and that those who purchased tickets in person had QR codes they could scan to access that same form.

The ASG Advisor also stated that the rule was also enforced as strictly back then as it was now.

“If someone were to arrive 5-10 minutes late without notice, they wouldn’t have been allowed in,” said Willer. “It’s all about making sure that we are accountable and providing safe places for students to go. We don’t want students to do things that aren’t school-appropriate and then come in during the last 10 minutes of the dance. We are responsible from the time you leave your door to the time you return home.”

As for members of ASG, “They had forgotten the rule.” Willer added.

NOTE: This is still a breaking news story and will continue to be updated as more facts become known. IHS Voice Staff members Mykal Mashack, Sumukh Murthy, and Aditya Bashyam authored this Breaking News article; Suyash Lakhmani, Tanmay Lakhotia, Urmi Mandal, and Lynnette Chavez contributed to this piece from the IHS Homecoming Dance.