Duet By Dolly Parton And Miley Cyrus Banned From First-Grade Concert

Different school districts have different rules, and the rules don’t always make sense to the students, teachers and parents. Sometimes, the rules are also open to interpretation, and that can make things even more confusing.

Some school rules that not everyone agrees with might have to do with things like a dress code or what is or is not appropriate at school. Recently, one school in Wisconsin made a decision that disappointed the children and left the teachers confused.

The students at Heyer Elementary School in Waukesha, Wisconsin, were eagerly preparing for a spring concert. The concert involved the students learning and performing multiple different songs, some of which the school district approved, and others that they deemed “controversial” and forced the teachers to remove from the lineup.

Melissa Tempel is a first grade duel-language teacher at Heyer. She explained that her students were particularly “excited” about one of the songs they would be performing. The song was “Rainbowland,” a duet performed by Dolly Parton and Miley Cyrus. The lyrics include lines like “Living in a Rainbowland \ Where everything goes as planned \ And I smile’ \ Cause I know if we try, we could really make a difference in this world.” 

According to Parton, the song is “really about if we could love one another a little better or be a little kinder, be a little sweeter, we could live in rainbow land.”

For whatever reason, the school district in Waukesha decided that the song was inappropriate for the spring concert and insisted that it be removed from the set list. This left students disappointed and the teachers wondering why exactly the decision was made to cut the song. Learn more about the parent and teacher reaction to the district’s decision in the video below.

Tempel doesn’t know exactly why the song was cut but hypothesizes that it had to do with the district’s “controversial” policy. She explained, “There’s so many different things it could be. We do have a controversial content policy within our district. And it’s a little bit vague. So it’s hard to know exactly what the district would say is controversial or not.”

School District of Waukesha Superintendent Jim Sebert told FOX 6 that the song was cut because of the controversial policy. He explained, “It was determined that ‘Rainbowland’ could be perceived as controversial.” He added that the district didn’t believe the song was “appropriate for the age and maturity level of the students.”

While Temple doesn’t know for sure what the district considered controversial about the song, she heard rumors that the song was considered controversial because Cyrus was singing it. If that’s true, she thinks it’s ridiculous. She explained, “Musical artists often do things that are very controversial, so that would be a really strange way to approach the controversial topic. How would you sing pretty much any song? Everybody’s got something in their past that might be controversial.”

Listen to the song “Rainbowland” for yourself in the video below.