Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Look Moms, No Hands!

When a Pre-K teacher meets her new parents at the beginning of a school year, there are certain questions she can expect: What time should I pick him up at the end of the day? Can she have a teddy bear for nap time? That sort of thing.

But this year I got a question I wasn't expecting: Can you touch the children?

The first person to come up with a sadder or more disturbing question than that wins the deed to my house! Hell, I'll even toss in the dog, because I know nobody's coming up with anything to top that.

Can you touch the children. In Pre-K.

sigh . . . .

Unfortunately, she didn't just pull the question out of thin air. She asked because her sister's kids go to a popular new school in our area that has a strict no-touching policy. Because I'm sure if some creepy pedophile does happen to get a job there, he wouldn't think of breaking policy. Well, I was going to defile that kid over there, but damn the luck! There's a policy!

There are bad people in the world, it's true. And there's nothing that should be more jealously guarded than our children's safety. But denying a child a comforting hug, a deserved pat on the back, or a reassuring hand to hold, in my opinion, has the potential to cause more harm than it prevents.

As for my Pre-K kids, I started the year by giving them each a beautiful little welcome gift ~


Sidewalk Chalk

Rainbow Marshmallow Twist

And a big hug.


panamamama said...

I know when I taught it was the beginning of the no hug policy in PCSD. I hugged one kid and he flipped out- because I found out later he was beaten at home. Those are the kids that need hugs the most, just to know someone cares. So sad. Love your sweet gifts!

judy said...

You're right Suz. Not being able to hug a little kiddo is about the saddest thing I can think of, for the teacher, and especially for the child.
As always....love the way you
tell your story. (Great welcome gifts too!)

blupencl said...

Ugh! I am turning into somebody's grandmother! Oh. I *am* somebody's grandmother.

Anyway. What is this world coming to? I don't know why people teach. I really don't. :( That is one thankless job and I'm glad there are a bunch of you out there, because I never could be. So sad.

Soozietoone said...

When I taught high school in another life, my kids seemed to take comfort from a hug, a squeeze on the arm or back while they were taking tests, etc. I never thought twice about it. It's a brand new world now. Your bag of goodies will make their day.