Friday, December 23, 2011

Children in the News

When I see a story like this one on Yahoo, it just makes my mind wobble in shock.

A school has been accused of putting a 9-year-old autistic student in a duffel-like bag as punishment for acting out. The drawstring was pulled tight, alleges his mother, who came upon the scene when she was called to the school.

“At a meeting with school district officials, the bag was described as a "therapy bag," Baker said, though she wasn't clear exactly what that meant. She said her son would sometimes be asked to roll over a bag filled with balls as a form of therapy, but she didn't know her son was being placed in the bag. She said school officials told her it was not the first time they had put him in the bag.”

How could anyone, especially educators, ever put a child into a bag?

This has eerie similarities to the story yesterday about a Chicago father who posted a photo on Facebook of his daughter bound and gagged with duct tape.
Trust me, I know when a child misbehaves there’s a great urge to make them stop. And I’ve been on the edge of sanity sometimes and not known what to do. But help me here, there aren’t really people who think any of this is an okay practice, are there?

I think we’d all agree on the duct tape being so wrong that it’s even frightening to look at the photo. But a school that places autistic children in bags? This can’t be an acceptable practice in anyone’s mind.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Twinkle, Twinkle, Little...What?!

The Telegraph is reporting that kids have been banned from making a “star” sign with their hands while singing Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star because the gesture resembles sign language for vagina and they don’t want anyone to be offended.

One mom said: "It seems a little politically correct. These are innocent little children just making a sign to show a star. No-one would give it a second thought. Now every parent may worry their child may be making an offensive gesture when they're singing this song."

Okay, my big question…why is the word vagina “an offensive gesture”? It’s just a vagina. It’s a body part.

If a sign language user actually saw these kids making little star-like shapes with their hands that in some way resembled the sign for vagina, I think they might think it was kind of cute and funny, but offensive? Hardly.

My daughter at brunch with friends a few weeks ago was showing that she had a kitty scratch on her middle finger. Were my friends offended? No. Amused at her innocence? Yes.

Moving on…