A Florida 8th grader just wanted to show support for a friend who needed it. But a quick hug before school has earned her a detention.
Ella attends Jackson Heights Middle School. The school district bans “inappropriate touching,” but leaves interpretation up to the principals. Ella’s principal sees hugging or touching a friend as being a public display of affection. Apparently, this school is attempting to foster a very sterile environment.
Kathy Fishbough, Ella’s mom, told Click Orlando she felt the detention was unwarranted and against the nature of junior high students who want to support each other.
“I do think about inappropriate touching and boys and girls of this age having feelings for one another, but that’s not what we’re dealing with here. And if administration can’t tell the difference between a friendly, ‘How are you doing’ hug and an inappropriate hug, then I think we have another big problem.
I did ask the principal, if something happened in our family, and she needed to console her cousin or her cousin wanted to console her, would she get in trouble? She said, ‘Yes, ma’am. She would get a PDA.”
After this detention, Ella is now afraid to touch anyone. While the government is trying to foster more compassion towards people, this seems like an incredibly disruptive policy.
How would you react if your 8th grader got a detention for hugging a friend? Please comment below.
H/T: Click Orlando