Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Making Better Bricks


Yet another battle between parents who support their tot's freedom of expression and individual style, versus a school board that wants boys to have conventional haircuts. (Why is it that the adults involved in these disputes so often seem less mature than the kids?) But still....
On its Web site, the district says its code is in place because "students who dress and groom themselves neatly, and in an acceptable and appropriate manner, are more likely to become constructive members of the society in which we live."
Suspending a four-year-old from school because his hair is too long or, as seems more likely, because the style is not appropriately masculine? (Check the picture in the linked article.) I guess the principal decided, he don't need no education.

6 comments:

  1. There's plenty of blame to go around, but "parent's who support their tot's freedom of expression and individual style"?

    Give me a break. How about white trash parents who like publicity and don't much care if their child gets an education?

    The father complains that "The school district appears "more concerned about his hair than his education,"" - hello Daddy, you are the one who is deciding that "Tater Tot's doo" is more imprtatnt than Tater Tot being in school".

    . . .and no one should be surprised that Dad's next line was, "I don't think it's right to hold a child down and force him to do something ... when it's not hurting him or affecting his education." Why do I get the feeling that this guy is the answer to, "What kind of parent lets his kids run wild in restaurants, stores, and airplanes, and resents anyone else who complains . . ."

    CWD

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  2. As I asked, why is it that the adults involved in these disputes so often seem less mature than the kids? That includes the parents.

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  3. Re: what CWD said about the kind of parent who lets their kid run wild...

    You hit the nail on the head, friend. That is the kind who "parents" by giving the kid Cheetos and setting it in front of the TV and if the TV is showing something inappropriate then hey! What can he do?

    Sadly, non-WT parents can be just as irksome...I learned that lesson when my Corner Brewery dared to ask parents to--and this crazy here folks--watch their kids at the bar. At the BAR! And to not bring kids after 9pm. Because it's not like they are kids and should be, you know, asleep. I voiced support for this on their blog and out came the craziesz with their little fingers a'typin' about rights and blah blah blah.

    I am sure that Aaron is cool parent (and you too CWD, if you have tots)

    :)

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  4. Of course. Like CWD I always watch my kid when we're at the bar, and cut her off the minute she starts slurring or staggering, and tuck her in under a few bar towels the moment the clock hits 9. ;-)

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  5. The issue isn't really Tater Tot's 'do. It's a rigid and authoritarian school that's more interested in fantasizing Eisenhower is still President than on caring about things like, say, educating their students.

    And as for being able to discern Dad's parenting style and disciplinary approach from the fact that he's standing up to a principal who clearly needs to be put out to pasture - that's 'give me a fucking break' territory. (In which territory, incidentally, belongs the attitude of a bar owner who allows children to be present in the bar and then whines that they aren't all safely locked in their homes at 9 p.m.)

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  6. The bartender mentioned above did tell the parents to control their kids and to take them out after 9. That's why he caught flak.

    If the kid were fourteen and were knowingly accepting isolation from his peers as a consequence of wanting to express his individual style, I would be right there with you. He's old enough to decide when to take a stand against authority, consider the consequences, and decide for himself. I also agree with the observation that the problem is probably much less the hair length than it is the hair style, and that the principal is an authoritarian who would be an anachronism in pretty much any state north of the Bible Belt.

    That said, the kid is four. He isn't old enough to fully appreciate the consequences of his decision, and it's well with the role of even a progressive parent to say "You need an education, you need to play with your friends, we live in Texas and we can't afford private school -- so it's time for a haircut."

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