Beating Students Is Allowed at Some Schools, But Hugging Is Banned at Another?

This is wrong at one school, but hitting kids is right at others?

New Jersey is a long way off from Northern Florida — in more ways than one.

NPR recently reported on how an astonishing 19 states still allow teachers to beat students in school. In Northern Florida, nearly every county reserves the right for teachers to spank kids for egregious transgressions such as tardiness.

At the Matawan-Aberdeen Middle School in New Jersey, it’s probably safe to say there’s no spanking allowed. That’s because they seem to have a problem with any kind of bodily contact. They just banned hugging in school, according to the San Francisco Gate (via Free Range Kids).

The ban came after some “incidents of unsuitable, physical interactions” and the superintendent says it is the school’s responsibility to “teacher children about appropriate interactions.”

So that, of course, begs a question (or a few dozen). Such as, instead of banning hugs after some “unsuitable” interactions, why wouldn’t they just focus more on what is suitable? Shouldn’t kids learn about “good” and “bad” touches? Aren’t hug among the most suitable touches out there? Clearly some aren’t, but why focus on the negative? And how do you reconcile telling kids that, in most situations, hugging is wrong, why some kids who live in other areas are being taught that hitting is OK?

If those aren’t the wackiest, most mind-boggling examples of oxymoronic (emphasis on moron, of course) teaching, then I don’t know what is.

What do you make of a hugging ban?

Photo credit: iStock

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