Principal sends home note to parents forbidding “boyfriend-girlfriend” relationships
No one wants to think about their elementary-aged kids “dating” — we as parents should definitely be given more time to prepare for that nonsense. But since the beginning of time, kids have been filled with puppy love — and no amount of discipline or threats is going to stop that. A Texas school seems to think it can threaten kids into skipping that whole part of childhood all together. They sent a note home last week informing parents of the types of interactions that will earn their kids a Friday detention: and the list is ridiculous.
WMAZ reports that Holiday Heights Elementary Principal Michael Wamsley sent home a letter warning parents about “distractions resulting from the students allowing themselves to get caught up in romantic issues and the drama that follows.” He also included a list of things that will get a kid in trouble:
- Going steady/dating another student
- Discussion of others dating (boyfriend/girlfriend talk)
- Spreading rumors or messages of “who likes who”
- Showing public displays of affection (holding hands, passing love notes, bringing gifts, etc.)
- Any other romantic gesture that distracts from learning in the class
Someone needs a hobby.
“I know you share our belief that elementary school is no place for boyfriend-girlfriend relationships,” Wamsley wrote. “Children between the ages of five and thirteen have more appropriate and important areas on which to focus their energies and attention.”
Seriously? Yes, I would love to bury my head in the sand and believe that my children will not have a love interest until well into their thirties, when I’m emotionally prepared to deal with it — but little kids have crushes. I still remember mine from kindergarten. The heart wants what it wants.
Kids have feelings — parents have to teach them how to navigate those feelings. When it comes to emotions and relationships, just telling kids “NO” doesn’t always work so great. Didn’t Wamsley read Romeo and Juliet? He’s going to end up making the idea even more alluring. Who isn’t intrigued by a little forbidden love? Also, “discussion of others dating?” Good luck stopping that. He’s biting off a little more than he can chew here.
“Please encourage your child not to participate in romantic actions or boyfriend/girlfriend talk,” the note continues. “Together we want to make sure your children concentrate on learning as much as they can during these vital educational years.”
The intention is there, but this is seriously rubbing a lot of parents the wrong way. “As parents, we should be talking to our children about what those feelings mean, when it’s apropriate to shows those in a public setting, when it’s OK to have those feelings, and that those feelings aren’t wrong,” explained one parent.