Hugs, Party Invitations And Cupcakes Are Ruining Our Schools

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shutterstock_62873338A school district in Maryland is restricting hugs and banning party invitations and cupcakes  brought from home for the whole class. Because we all know that hugs, cupcakes and birthday parties are destroying the safety of American schools.

From NBC News:

A county in Maryland is putting limits on some of the trappings of elementary school: Hugs from grown-ups are restricted, birthday-party invitations are banned, and no more bringing cupcakes for the whole class.

The guidelines come from a committee of parents and school administrators that started meeting last fall. They were put in place after the massacre last December in Newtown, Conn. District officials stress that they are not final, and say they want feedback from parents.

I’m a little confused about this. I’m not sure why the horrific events of Newtown would inspire a no hugging, cupcake, or birthday invitation rule. That just doesn’t seem like a logical response.

My child is not elementary school-aged yet, so my only experience with elementary school is my own. I don’t remember having adults lining up to hug me all of the time. If I were to hug an adult, it was probably because they happened to be my best friend’s mom or something. This rule would restrict parents to hugging only their own children. Don’t you think it will be a little weird when Sally goes to hug her best friend’s mom – and the mom doesn’t hug back? I don’t know. This rule is just strange to me.

The cupcake thing I get. I understand that some kids have allergies. But if they are life-threatening peanut allergies or something, I’m sure the teachers have already been given instructions about that – haven’t they? This seems a little rash to me, but then again I don’t have a child with a severe allergy. If I did, I may feel differently.

The party invitation banning? I don’t know. On the one hand, I don’t like the idea of children having hurt feelings, but on the other hand – I think it prepares them for life a little. We can’t shelter them from all disappointments, can we?

Maybe these guidelines are a step in the right direction – but they seem a little paranoid to me. And for the life of me, I can’t understand why a tragic event like the one in Newtown would inspire them.

(photo: Ruth Black/