School Bans Playground Tag

School Bans Playground Tag
10 March 2016

The latest instalment in the health-and-safety-gone-mad saga that seems to be plaguing every area of kids' lives is this. A school in West Yorkshire has banned children from playing tag in the playground.

Nope, it's not April 1st.

Metro reports:

A primary school has banned kids from playing tig and parents are seriously unimpressed. Christ the King School, in Leeds, West Yorks, claim the traditional playtime game has upset some pupils.

The worst part of the paper's coverage of this story is that pupils "caught flouting the ban" will be "disciplined and kept inside". I'm sorry, what now? Isn't that just a little bit Draconian for a game that's essentially s childhood rite of passage?

Generally I'm a scaredy-pants when it comes to conflict, especially where that means raising something controversial with anyone as far as my kids are concerned. But I think even I'd be marching into school if I heard that my lads had been banned from playing tag in the playground.

I'm not overlooking the fact that children can be injured during playground games - my own lads have had their fair share of bumped heads and skinned knees during games of tag at school - but that's just a normal part of a healthy childhood.

However the headteacher of the school in question said the ban came after upsets and torn clothes during games of tag. He reportedly said:

'We've had a few instances recently of children being upset and having clothes torn during games of tig. As a temporary measure, we have decided to ask pupils not to play tig in our small playground for now. Once the weather improves and the larger school field is available to use, the children will be able to play tig again.'

How about just asking kids not to tear one another's clothes or get carried away during a game of tag? I'd definitely prefer that my kids were given the opportunity to learn appropriate boundaries rather than just be banned from playing a problematic game. What does that teach them?

Tag is a quintessential rite of childhood. If we ban it, what's next? How about we just stop this gradual descent into over-zealous risk management and just replace school uniforms with a head-to-toe suit made of cotton wool instead?

We'd love to hear your thoughts on this story. Do you support a ban on games like tag in the playground, or do you think it's absurd to curtail children's freedom in this way?

TOPICS:   Parents

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