New no-touch policy introduced at B.C. elementary school
Published Tuesday, November 5, 2013 10:47AM EST
Last Updated Wednesday, November 6, 2013 11:03PM EST
A ban on touching during recess at a B.C. elementary school has shocked parents, who call the new no-touch policy "ridiculous."
For most kids, recess is a chance to run around and goof-off with their friends, but a new ban on touching at a school in Aldergrove could put a damper on playtime.
School administrators at Coghlan Fundamental Elementary School in B.C. have banned kindergarten students from touching each other during recess.
Students were sent home with a letter on Friday, advising parents of the new hands-off rule which prohibits games such as tag, holding hands and imaginary Star Wars light saber duels.
Julie Chen, a mother from the school, says she does not understand the motive behind such a strict ban.
"I can’t imagine little kids not being able to hug each other or help each other on the playground," Chen told CTV news. "Not tag, no hugging, no touching at all."
The letter states that the ban was put in place as a result of several playground injuries over the past few weeks due to games and other hands-on play during recess.
The school says it will have a zero-tolerance policy when it comes to the no-touching policy and children who break the rule will miss playtime or be sent to the office.
School district spokesmen Ken Hoff says the ban is simply a measure to ensure student safety and not meant to severely punish students for touching.
"It wasn’t meant to be an instantaneous situation where the hammer is just going to drop if a child touches another child," Hoff said. "I think what it was meant to convey is we are taking the issue seriously," he added.
The letter asks parents to talk to their children about the new rules and encourage them to come up imaginary games that don’t involve "fighting".
Buzz Bishop, writer of popular parenting blog DadCAMP, says the new ban sounds absurd.
"School bans touching? Touching. How can they be serious?" Bishop wrote in a recent post.
"Are we that terrible at monitoring our kids that we can’t handle the few running amok on the playground, and we must put the entire student population on lockdown? Apparently we are," he added.
Chen feels the new rule is simply taking things too far.
"I get that kids have to have rules but at some point, where do we draw the line?" Chen said.
"I am not going to tell my daughter she can’t touch her friends at school. I am going to teach her boundaries."