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Unvaccinated students 'numbered' with Sharpie marker at New Hampshire prom

At a prom in New Hampshire, high school students attending who weren't able to prove their vaccination status had numbers written on them with Sharpie marker to tell them apart from vaccinated attendees.

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Hannah Nightingale Washington DC
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At a prom in New Hampshire, high school students attending who weren't able to prove their vaccination status had numbers written on them with Sharpie marker to tell them apart from vaccinated attendees.

Students who were unable to provide evidence of their vaccination status, like their vaccine card, had a number written on their hand. Throughout the night of dancing, which was divided into three outdoor dance floors on school property, students were asked to raise their hand after every few songs to "determine who they were around," an email from the school obtained by WMUR9 stated.

State Representative Melissa Litchfield told WMUR9 that parents were concerned that students were being "singled out for not being vaccinated."

Several outraged constituents informed the state representative that unvaccinated students who attended the Exeter High School prom "had a number written on them in Sharpie" and were tracked throughout the evening since check-in.

"The prom happened on Friday night, and Saturday I started receiving messages from parents, constituents," said Litchfield. "Underclassmen went around and they took down the numbers of the children that were on the dance floor approximately every three songs, again this is what I'm being told by parents, I was not there, that they had taken down their numbers and that this was for contact tracing."

Those vaccinated were differentiated with no number assignment.

Exeter High School principal Michael Monahan explained to WMUR9 in a statement why the administration conducted prom in such a manner.

"We are aware that some concerns have been expressed that students were singled out or had their privacy violated. We made every effort possible—while adhering to contact tracing guidelines—to ensure that this did not happen. We hope the community will understand that while no model is perfect, this model let the students enjoy a close to normal and highly desired experience to cap off their senior year. That's the memory we want to leave them with."

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