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Pinetree Elementary’s no-hugging rule absurd

Posted: May 31, 2008 1:37 a.m.
Updated: August 1, 2008 5:03 a.m.
I read Sharon Cotal's article in The Signal on Memorial Day ("Sorry, this school is in a no-hugging zone," May 26) and the more I read it, the more exasperated I became!

I know the verdict is not in yet for Pinetree Elementary School, but it is totally absurd that an elementary school principal would even think young children should not be allowed to "hug, high-five, shake hands or just be close" to their classmates.

It does not matter whether they are in kindergarten, third grade or sixth grade, this is what young children do - they like to hug!

I realize that hugging has not been banned at this school but it is not recommended, either; a sixth-grader could lose points because of hugging!

Have we become so callous a society that we think this display of affection is "wrong or even bad"? Does this principal really think the students at Pinetree Elementary will do better academically if they are not able to show some type of affection to their friends?

Give me a break, and please let's use some common sense. Our society expects our children to grow up quickly. Let them be children. Do not put restrictions on something as simple as a hug.

As a grandmother of three young girls, I shudder to think if they were not allowed to show affection at their school. They are very loving children to their family and their close friends.

How sad they would feel if they were to get into trouble for celebrating with a hug. Shame on this principal for even thinking that showing this type of affection should be banned from "her" school.

I truly hope the superintendent of Sulphur Springs School District puts a stop to this type of thinking. It could be very harmful for young children.

Please do not misunderstand, I do not believe anyone should use force, hit, shove or kick another student or playmate. But there is certainly a big difference between this type of physical touching and the affection-type that young children show each other.

Even in junior high school, girls will automatically hold a friend's hand, whether it be male or female.

We are not talking about intimacy or kissing here, we are talking about a hug, a high-five or a pat on the back. Where is our community going if this type of affection is banned or not allowed?

Do we truly want our young children to be "afraid" to be themselves and not learn how to be close to someone and show compassion, by a hug or a pat on the back?

Learning how to deal with people, being kind and affectionate, are all part of the "learning process." Not everything is learned from a book - some things are just learned by being a person!

This is my own opinion and I wanted to show support for other mothers/grandmothers who encourage their children/grandchildren to give a hug to a friend who just might need it for whatever reason!


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