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Is It Time to Ban School Bans?

What do Silly Bandz and Christmas trees have in common? They’ve been blacklisted from schools. Schools have banned everything from yoyos to the word meep. Haven’t they figured out by now that these silly bans don’t work?

Now Jezebel has a radical idea: let’s call for a ban on school bans! While we’re at it, we can outlaw censorship in school libraries, too. We might even consider throwing the politicians and ideologues out of controlling our kids’ curriculums.

But let’s start with their right to wear oddly shaped plastic bracelets in English class if they choose.

Here’s Jezebel’s blogger’s list of stuff her school nixed when she was a kid:

pogs
— yoyos
— “socks pulled up to the knee and worn with cutoff shorts” (I think this was supposed to be a gang thing, but I never saw anyone wear it, and only heard of it in our dress code, which had to be read aloud in full during homeroom every day)
— non-approved forms of handball (the approved form was given to us on a mimeographed sheet, which we immediately and gleefully destroyed)
— “rugby” (this was not the sport commonly practiced in the United Kingdom, but rather a game we used to play when we lost our soccer ball, which mostly involved tackling. I kind of get why this was banned.)
— climbing hills
— cat’s cradle
I’m posting hers because the only thing I remember my school banning was black trenchcoats, after the Columbine shooting. I remember this because I’ll never forget my mother wearing her own black trenchcoat to her meeting with our high school principal to discuss my sister’s recalcitrant goth look.
Did your school have any silly bans? Does your kids’ school now?
Photo: Steven DePolo
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