Thursday, May 22, 2008

Another School That's "Out of Touch" With Reality

Here we go again: A Minneapolis elementary school is the latest one to ban touching among its students:
Students at a Minneapolis Elementary School are faced with a new rule: No touching.

Armatage Elementary School issued the ban, saying students were being too rough with one another.

Teachers allow the students to touch during music class, but not during recess.

"You don't need to be shoving, pushing and touching. All we're trying to do is alleviate what results in fighting and kids getting hurt," said Armatage Principal Joan Frank.
Shoving and pushing? Sure. But touching, period? No handshakes, no high-fives? Isn't that going a bit overboard?

As you might imagine, the parents whose kids were roughhousing "victims" support the ban, but others think that it goes too far:
"Kids need to be kids--get out energy out by roughhousing," said parents Jessica Henrikson.

Many parents share that concern, saying the policy simply goes too far and will be tough to enforce.

Parents who oppose the plan tell 5 EYEWITNESS NEWS that the school sent an email saying there would be no contact in school. However, the follow-up emails focused only on activities like football and tag.
I'm trying to imagine touchless football and touchless tag. How does that work? (Hat tip: Lileks at

We spoke on this subject most recently back in the fall, when a local school district stopped an eighth-grade girl from holding hands with a friend.

Isn't this going a little far at times? Can't kids just be kids on occasion? Chime away in the comments, as part of this seemingly never-ending discussion.

Another bit of school lunacy: Parents of kids at one North Carolina elementary school are upset over a policy that prohibits students from going to the bathroom alone, supposedly because of an ongoing graffiti problem. They can go in pairs or as an entire class (no, that doesn't hold the potential for trouble at all!), and kids who go at "inappropriate" times have to eat lunch silently at a table by themselves.

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