School penalizes students for hugs, high-fives
Strict no-contact rule, meant to stem violence, has some pushing for change
Stand and be counted
Updated: 6:40 p.m. ET June 18, 2007
VIENNA, Va. - A rule against physical contact at a Fairfax County middle school is so strict that students can be sent to the principal's office for hugging, holding hands or even high-fiving.
Unlike some schools in the Washington area, which ban fighting or inappropriate touching, Kilmer Middle School in Vienna bans all touching — and that has some parents lobbying for a change.
Hugging was Hal Beaulieu's crime when he sat next to his girlfriend at lunch a few months ago and put his arm around her shoulder. He was given a warning, but told that repeat missteps could lead to detention.
"I think hugging is a good thing," said Hal, a seventh-grader. "I put my arm around her. It was like for 15 seconds. I didn't think it would be a big deal."
But at a school of 1,100 students that was meant to accommodate 850, school officials think some touching can turn into a big deal. They've seen pokes lead to fights, gang signs in the form of handshakes or girls who are uncomfortable being hugged but embarrassed to say anything.
"You get into shades of gray," Kilmer Principal Deborah Hernandez said. "The kids say, 'If he can high-five, then I can do this.' "
Hernandez said the no-touching rule is meant to ensure that all students are comfortable and crowded hallways and lunchrooms stay safe. She said school officials are allowed to use their judgment in enforcing the rule. Typically, only repeat offenders are reprimanded.
'Making out goes too far'
But such a strict policy doesn't seem necessary to 13-year-old Hal and his parents, who have written a letter to the county school board asking for a review of the rule. Hugging is encouraged in their home, and their son has been taught to greet someone with a handshake.
Hal said he feels he knows what's appropriate and what's not.
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Thread: the wtf of the day
06-19-2007, 10:44 PM #1
the wtf of the dayStation 4-5-2
06-20-2007, 01:21 AM #2
06-20-2007, 03:50 AM #3
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*The Todd Voice* (from scrubs)
08-20-2007, 12:38 AM #4
Political correctness, well, sucks.
I have seen the enemy, and it is us. Lord, save us from ourselves.
08-20-2007, 06:16 AM #5
wow,just crazy."sauver ou périr"
"courage et dévouement"
2 french mottoes in french fire service.
08-20-2007, 06:30 AM #6
Open the airlock HAL, it is time to get off this planet.Psychiatrists state 1 in 4 people has a mental illness.
Look at three of your friends, if they are ok, your it.
08-20-2007, 10:14 AM #7
If you don't do it RIGHT today, when will you have time to do it over? (Hall of Fame basketball player/coach John Wooden)
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08-20-2007, 02:55 PM #8
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