These days, prom organizers are taking a page from nightclubs’ book by carding partygoers at the door. Except at the prom, they’re making sure guests are young enough. In many high schools, new policies govern how old students’ prom dates can be. And in most cases, 20 or 21 is the cutoff. At one Minnesota school, the rule was implemented after a past prom where a student brought a 48-year-old date. “A 48-year-old at prom just seemed very unwholesome to us,” said the school’s prom adviser. Concerns about alcohol use also come into play; many schools ban dates who are old enough to purchase booze. Students’ opinions on the date rule are mixed. Rosalie Carnegie, a senior barred from bringing her 22-year-old Iraq War-veteran fiancé to the prom, was understandably disappointed, though she said she respected the rule. But another senior called the age cutoff “kind of stupid.” “I’m pretty sure a 21-year-old isn’t too thrilled to go to prom,” she said. “They aren’t going to prom to get drunk; they’re going because their date wants to.”
A version of this news article first appeared in the Web Watch blog.