Monday, July 2, 2012

10 Surprising Things Banned in Schools Today: Part 1

10 Surprising Things Banned in Schools Today: #1 and #2
June 25th, 2012 by Staff Writers for

While there are many things banned in schools worldwide that should rightly be restricted, many feel that schools are taking regulations too far these days and banning things that can help kids build relationships, have fun, learn, and understand how to function in the real world. They may just have a point. As you read through this list, you'll see more than a few knee-jerk reactions by schools to problems that could have been solved in much more logical and meaningful ways, as well as a few things most of us can't imagine our school days without. More than being surprising, many of these bans are downright ridiculous and draw attention away from far more pressing educational issues.

It completely makes sense to ban all types of inappropriate touching at school, but many schools have gone far beyond that. They've not only banned sexual touching, horseplay, and fighting, but other, far more innocuous types of touching as well. One school in Fairfax, Virginia decided to ban all types of touching, including high fives. Another school in Fort Worth banned hugs and hand-holding. They're not alone. Schools around the nation and the world are following suit. Schools defend their decisions by stating that the bans help ensure nothing inappropriate goes on (whether between students or between teachers and students) and reduces their chances of being caught up in a lawsuit. Kids and their parents aren't entirely convinced, and many have circulated petitions, staged protests, and quite vocally made their opposition to the bans clear to school administrators.

2. Dancing:
Kids today may be getting the chance to live out real-life versions of the '80s classic (and now remade) Footloose. We have no qualms with bans that don't allow students to engage in sexually suggestive dancing, but schools aren't just outlawing those kinds of moves. While silly, it actually isn't that surprising. Ridiculous dance bans are nothing new, with "The Twist" being banned by Buffalo in 1962 and all fad dances being off-limits at BYU around the same time. It seems not much has changed. In 1996, many schools banned "the Macarena" for being "too provocative." While the lyrics do reference sex, it's unlikely that many elementary school kids even noticed. Remember the Hokey Pokey? Kids may not be able to do this dance anymore either, as religious officials have said it promotes anti-Catholic feelings (again, unlikely that anyone, let alone kids, would relate the two). Dancing is apparently so objectionable that in New York, the word itself is banned from standardized tests.


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