By Elsa Maxey
An upside down candy cane is a “J” for Jesus. Because of that suggestion, a message circulating about holiday parties at a local area elementary school indicated that candy canes would not be allowed…probably because of the religious implication and not because it is a Spanish first name. What’s more, the colors of the candy canes were also at issue – not red, green, or white combinations, but blue and white were okay because it’s a wintery combination…or just red alone was okay irrespective of the “J” for Jesus.
So, what part of all this is true? “Nothing,” said Katy ISD’s Director of Communications Steve Stanford. He said an alleged email or call relating to Katy ISD’s Rylander Elementary School was about “a friend of a friend of a friend whose daughter goes to the school” and the understanding was that there was a ban of the candy canes. Stanford said it was reported that a discussion among the elementary school homeroom moms was about one of them mentioning that the upside down candy cane stood for Jesus. “This occurred in the parent ranks,” said Stanford, and noted that neither the school nor the district issued any ban or “any color” ban of the candy canes.
Rylander Elementary School, which is allowed to have candy canes at its holiday parties, is physically located in Fort Bend County. The Katy ISD school enrolls students that live in the surrounding neighborhoods, also in Fort Bend County.
As for religion and the candy cane, some religious groups use the candy cane symbolism in their teachings. Yet, others just see the candy cane shape as a walking stick. Upside down, it’s the first and last name initials of countless numbers of people, or, to so many others it’s just a sugary treat, sometimes minty sometimes not, making a regular appearance during the Christmas holiday season.