Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Give a hug, get...detention?

I feel more intelligent (relatively speaking) every day...and this one makes me feel like a genius.

(Kids, make sure your parents are OK with your reading explicit act of human contact is discussed).

This eighth-grade girl (center of the pic) gave hugs to two of her friends--half-hugs, actually, but hugs--as they left school. Shocking, huh?

She was given DETENTION because the morons who run the school deemed that this was the kind of "display of affection" that was prohibited by policy, as outlined in the school handbook.

Here's the full story.

No mention of a record of misbehavior, any complaints, anything. Nor is there a reference to a warning being issued; regardless, they applied the punishment for a second offense because she gave two hugs. Clearly these "leaders" know as little about the law as they do about human behavior (especially middle-school girl behavior). I wonder how three people could come to such a misguided conclusion. Actually I wonder if they dress themselves in the morning.

I don't throw the word "moron" around that much (not publicly, anyway) but the principal, assistant principal and the superintendent have more than earned the title in my thinking.

What ARE they teaching in the schools our education professionals attend? Or NEA seminars, maybe? I realize teachers are under a lot of stress and expected to do way too much with way too little in the way of financial and parental support. And too many people are too eager to sue. And of course, there's Oprah's problem in South Africa. Actually, teachers are my heroes...the good ones, anyway.

However, some seem to have come to the conclusion that it is never their job to exercise any judgement whatsoever when it comes to discipline, or any human interaction with their students. Not allowing a kid to take an aspirin (but a condom? No problem!)...treating a spoon in a 2nd grader's backpack as if it were a nuclear warhead...forcing "school standard attire" to achieve an illusion of conformity, despite a lack of evidence of any effect on this.

I don't expect every educator to display the wisdom of Solomon, but a little common sense would prevent this kind of nonsense from happening. There's a time for punishment and a time for mercy; some folks apparently need to check their watches.

I mean, did these people learn nothing from The Breakfast Club?

If all an educator can do is interpret a policy in the most rigid and literal way possible, like a computer...why don't we just let HAL 9000 from 2001: A Space Odyssey take over? Or has he already? HAL...are you there? HAL?

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