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School Bans Hugging
by aneela
March 25, 2013 at 8:47 AM

School Bans Hugging & the Decline of Civilization Continues

by Michele Zipp

hugsWhen discussing what's wrong with the world today, we can start by looking at what's happening in schools and with children. There is bullying that seems far worse than anything happening 20 years ago. There is violence of children against children -- Sandy Hook and Columbine just to name two. There are teachers who do inappropriate things. I could go on and on. And so as a result of this, a school has banned hugging. At St. Mary’s County public elementary schools in Maryland, parents can hug their own child, but they cannot hug or touch any other child.

What's sad is everything that is wrong with the world today forces us to make these kinds of rules. And these are the kind of rules that are somewhat dehumanizing. We could become emotionless and rigid. We could end up fearing socialization.

A panel of parents and teachers came up with this rule after a series of meetings. It's not just the hugging that is banned. Kids at St. Mary's County schools cannot hand out party invitations at school in fear those not invited would feel bad. Any food brought in by parents cannot be home-baked and instead must be store-bought with an ingredient list (due to allergies). Parents cannot discipline other people's kids (a rule I very much approve of). They also instated the rule that parents can't walk with their child when he or she leaves the cafeteria and they cannot approach teachers for a meeting in person -- it should be planned. Siblings are not allowed to visit and parents cannot walk with their child when leaving the cafeteria. Anyone visiting the school must check in with the front desk and have their photo taken.

Some of these make sense for safety. Some may be a result of issues the school had. And a lot has to do with what our society has become. These rules were decided upon prior to the Sandy Hook shootings, but because of it, they decided to roll them out sooner. "Everybody’s anxiety is high," Kelly Hall, executive director of elementary schools, told Southern Maryland Newspapers Online.

But I just can't help but think about the hugging. What comes to my mind is that perhaps they fear inappropriate hugs from other parents, which is hopefully a very rare thing. This rule also extends to any kind of touching, so even a high-five would be prohibited. It seems like we make this kind of rule because of a small minority of the population and then everyone has to change to prevent some sort of issue that probably won't happen. I also think a hugging ban isn't going to prevent someone from doing something sinister ... if that's what this is about. Evil doesn't follow rules.

If this rule was in place at my kids' school, we'd have an issue. My daughter hugs everyone -- other moms, other kids, her teachers. Some of the moms we've had playdates with, but she has hugged moms who we've only so far seen at pick-up and drop-off. In this case, it's not one of the parents who initiates the hug, it's the child. What happens then? What kind of action comes when someone breaks this rule? What should a parent do if another child initiates a hug?

Maybe we've gone too far. Maybe we're too worried about too many things. But when we live in a world like we live in and what it's become, I guess we have to be.

What do you think of a no hugging rule? Do you think this school district went too far?


Replies

  • Moma3boyz
    March 25, 2013 at 9:01 AM
    At our school before we homeschooled, the kids could not give out party invites unless they invited the whole class. All treats had to be their original, sealed, store bought container. We were responsible for making sure no one in the class had food allergies. No boy/girl hugging holding hands or other acts of public affection were allowed. Notice I said only BOY/GIRL. They are not allowed to pray aloud, even by themselves like before a meal or anything. They wasn't even allowed to pick out their own folder or notebooks. We had a list of colors to buy so that no one was offended by another's students folder. This was all in kinder-6th grade. We had a hand book around 70-80 pages long of rules to abide by. I shudder to think what high school would have been like. This was a public school not private or anything. The only school, besides homeschool that the kids could go to unless you wanted to drive them an hour away to the nearest private school or send them to boarding school 2 hrs away.
  • WantedNameTaken
    March 25, 2013 at 10:51 AM

    Good grief!  No wonder you pulled yours!  You sure that isn't a prison?  LOL!

    Quoting Moma3boyz:

    At our school before we homeschooled, the kids could not give out party invites unless they invited the whole class. All treats had to be their original, sealed, store bought container. We were responsible for making sure no one in the class had food allergies. No boy/girl hugging holding hands or other acts of public affection were allowed. Notice I said only BOY/GIRL. They are not allowed to pray aloud, even by themselves like before a meal or anything. They wasn't even allowed to pick out their own folder or notebooks. We had a list of colors to buy so that no one was offended by another's students folder. This was all in kinder-6th grade. We had a hand book around 70-80 pages long of rules to abide by. I shudder to think what high school would have been like. This was a public school not private or anything. The only school, besides homeschool that the kids could go to unless you wanted to drive them an hour away to the nearest private school or send them to boarding school 2 hrs away.


  • OneToughMami
    March 25, 2013 at 11:29 AM

    Sad. Hugs are nice and you know at some levels kids need that hug. Touch is part of human development. I work with grades 6-8 regularly but I have worked with K-8 on Saturdays through a tutoring company I work for. The little kids look for that hug when they are crying. They walk up to you arms out. What are we supposed to do as educators? Push them back? They are trying to develop trust.

  • debramommyof4
    March 25, 2013 at 12:39 PM

     I think it is retarded you csn not hug the kid.  When I taught preschool sunday school I got hugs even from kids that did not know me.  They were a huggy lovey bunch.  They were great kids all my regular kids and all the kids that came every once in awhile. I could have up to 20 kids and they always listened. I think that they enjoyed it so much.  The kids who were shy needed the hugs to feel better. 

  • twyliatepeka
    March 25, 2013 at 1:16 PM
    Wow!
  • usmom3
    by usmom3
    BJ
    March 25, 2013 at 1:54 PM

     I think it is sad that so many people see this in the schools their children atend & still can't see that the schools will never get better!

  • homeschoolx3
    March 25, 2013 at 5:28 PM

    Welcome to your new politically correct police state! Whinny govt schools that do not want to teach, but would rather turn out sheep that will bow down to the govt and do the govt's bidding.

  • kirbymom
    March 25, 2013 at 7:28 PM

    I think that is just Bulshevic!

    That is how humans learn to "be" with each other. How to know each other. If you don't have human contact, then you don't have human "feelings" and if you don't have human feelings then you have to rely on someone else's understanding of what those human feelings should be and therefore have to be told how to feel  and what to feel  and when to feel.  Would you rely solely on what someone else said was the "right" way to "feel" about a situation? 

    Ummmm, not me. I would rather have half of my "feelings" right, than to let someone tell how I should feel solely based on "their" feelings. I think I am capable of figuring things out on my own thank you very much.  

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