Mandatory inclusion delusion

Posted by: ST on August 9, 2006 at 9:42 pm

Just when you thought you’d seen it all. Via AP:

(AP) — Penny Grossman cringes each time a student mentions a birthday party during class at her Boston, Massachusetts-area preschool. The rule there, and at a growing number of America’s schools, is that parties and play-dates shouldn’t be discussed unless every child in the room is invited.

Gone are the days when a kindergartner dropped a handful of party invites in the classroom cubbyholes of their closest buddies. Today, if anyone is excluded the invitations can’t be handed out at school.

The idea that protecting kids from rejection is crucial to safeguarding their self-esteem has gained momentum in recent years.

Take Valentine’s Day: At some schools, a second-grader can’t offer paper valentines or heart-shaped candies to a short list of pals and secret crushes anymore. They give cards to everyone or no one at all.

Or sports: In many towns, scorekeeping no longer happens at soccer or softball games played by kids under 8 or 9. Win or lose, every player in the league gets a trophy at the season’s end.

Everybody’s gonna be happy, or no one can be happy. If one person has to suffer, everyone’s going to suffer with them. Got it?

This is, I think, how schools aid in spoiling kids and, in effect, causing harm over time: by overprotecting them. Things like this teach kids that if their friend gets an ice cream cone, they should be entitled to one. If they’re upset about something, they don’t want anyone else to be happy, either. There is no such thing as second place – everyone’s in first place because they tried. It’s not important to succeed, but to instead try. And even if you don’t try, you should still get rewarded.

Come to think of it, this sounds exactly like liberal-group think.

And some people wonder why so many young folks who graduate from high school go on to college as liberals?

Hat tip: Betsy Newmark

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  1. NC Cop says:

    My nephew plays in a baseball little league and EVERYONE in the league gets a trophy, regardless of how things turn out in the end.

    Once again, the overprotection you speak of S.T. Of course, he lives in Conn., big shocker!!!!

  2. Drewsmom says:

    I am 56 and remember that in my school only the kids you wanted at your party got the invites, sure I was pissed off and hurt but I didn’t develop anorexia or anything, I’d just get pissed off in a childlike way and go home and modify my party invite list.
    There is too much of this crap in school as I see everyday as I am a sub teacher.:((