A dad's hilarious letter to school asks them to explain why they're living in 1968.

Earlier this week, Stephen Callaghan's daughter Ruby came home from school. When he asked her how her day was, her answer made him raise an eyebrow.

Ruby, who's in the sixth grade at her school in Australia, told her dad that the boys would soon be taken on a field trip to Bunnings (a hardware chain in the area) to learn about construction.

The girls, on the other hand? While the boys were out learning, they would be sent to the library to have their hair and makeup done.


Ruby's reply made Callaghan do a double take. What year was it, again?

Callaghan decided to write a letter to the school sharing his disappointment — but his wasn't your typical "outraged parent" letter.

"Dear Principal," he began. "I must draw your attention to a serious incident which occurred yesterday at your school where my daughter is a Year 6 student."

"When Ruby left for school yesterday it was 2017," Callaghan continued. "But when she returned home in the afternoon she was from 1968."

The letter goes on to suggest that perhaps the school is harboring secret time-travel technology or perhaps has fallen victim to a rift in the "space-time continuum," keeping his daughter in an era where women were relegated to domestic life by default.

"I look forward to this being rectified and my daughter and other girls at the school being returned to this millennium where school activities are not sharply divided along gender lines," he concluded.

Dear Principal

I must draw your attention to a serious incident which occurred yesterday at your school where my daughter Ruby is a Year 6 student.

When Ruby left for school yesterday it was 2017 but when she returned home in the afternoon she was from 1968.

I know this to be the case as Ruby informed me that the "girls" in Year 6 would be attending the school library to get their hair and make-up done on Monday afternoon while the "boys" are going to Bunnings.

Are you able to search the school buildings for a rip in the space-time continuum? Perhaps there is a faulty Flux Capacitor hidden away in the girls toilet block.

I look forward to this being rectified and my daughter and other girls at the school being returned to this millennium where school activities are not sharply divided along gender lines.

Yours respectfully
Stephen Callaghan

When Callaghan posted the letter to Twitter, it quickly went viral and inspired hundreds of supportive responses.

Though most people who saw his response to the school's egregiously outdated activities applauded him, not everyone was on board.

One commenter wrote, "Sometimes it is just ok for girls to do girl things."

But Callaghan was ready for  that. "Never said it wasn't," he replied. "But you've missed the point. Why 'girl things' or 'boy things'... Why not just 'things anyone can do?'"

He later commented that he didn't think the school's plan was malicious, but noted the incident was a powerful example of "everyday sexism" at work.

Callaghan says the school hasn't responded to his letter. (Yes, he really sent it.) At least, not directly to him.

Some media outlets have reported that the school claims students are free to opt in and out of the different activities. But, as Callaghan says, gendering activities like this in the first place sends the completely wrong message.

In response to the outpouring of support, Callaghan again took to Twitter.

"At 12 years of age my daughter is starting to notice there are plenty of people prepared to tell her what she can and can't do based solely on the fact she is female," he wrote.

"She would like this to change. So would I."

True
Frito-Lay

Did you know one in five families are unable to provide everyday essentials and food for their children? This summer was also the hungriest on record with one in four children not knowing where their next meal will come from – an increase from one in seven children prior to the pandemic. The effects of COVID-19 continue to be felt around the country and many people struggle to secure basic needs. Unemployment is at an all-time high and an alarming number of families face food insecurity, not only from the increased financial burdens but also because many students and families rely on schools for school meal programs and other daily essentials.

This school year is unlike any other. Frito-Lay knew the critical need to ensure children have enough food and resources to succeed. The company quickly pivoted to expand its partnership with Feed the Children, a leading nonprofit focused on alleviating childhood hunger, to create the "Building the Future Together" program to provide shelf-stable food to supplement more than a quarter-million meals and distribute 500,000 pantry staples, school supplies, snacks, books, hand sanitizer, and personal care items to schools in underserved communities.

Keep Reading Show less

Sir David Attenborough has one of the most recognized and beloved voices in the world. The British broadcaster and nature historian has spent most of his 94 years on Earth educating humanity about the wonders of the natural world, inspiring multiple generations to care about the planet we all call home.

And now, Attenborough has made a new name for himself. Not only has he joined the cool kids on Instagram, he's broken the record for reaching a million followers in the shortest period. It only took four hours and 44 minutes, which is less time than it took Jennifer Aniston, who held the title before him at 5 hours and 16 minutes.

A day later, Attenborough is sitting at a whopping 3.4 million followers. And he only has two Instagram posts so far, both of them videos. But just watch his first one and you'll see why he's attracted so many fans.

Keep Reading Show less
True

$200 billion of COVID-19 recovery funding is being used to bail out fossil fuel companies. These mayors are combatting this and instead investing in green jobs and a just recovery.

Learn more on how cities are taking action: c40.org/divest-invest


There are very few people who have had quite as memorable a life as Arnold Schwarzenegger. His adult life has played out in four acts, with each one arguably more consequential than the last.

And now Schwarzenegger wants to play a role in helping America, his adopted home, ensure that our 2020 election is safe, secure and available to everyone willing and able to vote.

Shortly after immigrating to America, Schwarzenegger rose up to become the most famous bodybuilder in history, turning what was largely a sideshow attraction into a legitimate sport. He then pivoted to an acting career, becoming Hollywood's highest paid star in a run that spanned three decades.


Keep Reading Show less

One night in 2018, Sheila and Steve Albers took their two youngest sons out to dinner. Their 17-year-old son, John, was in a crabby mood—not an uncommon occurrence for the teen who struggled with mental health issues—so he stayed home.

A half hour later, Sheila's started getting text messages that John wasn't safe. He had posted messages with suicidal ideations on social media and his friends had called the police to check on him. The Albers immediately raced home.

When they got there, they were met with a surreal scene. Their minivan was in the neighbor's yard across the street. John had been shot in the driver's seat six times by a police officer who had arrived to check on him. The officer had fired two shots as the teen slowly backed the van out of the garage, then 11 more after the van spun around backward. But all the officers told the Albers was that John had "passed" and had been shot. They wouldn't find out until the next day who had shot and killed him.

Keep Reading Show less