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Coming Soon to a School Near You!

It looks like our columnist is on a tirade, but that’s nothing new!

A rejection is nothing more than a necessary step in the pursuit of success. ~ Bo Bennett

There's a disturbing new trend in some , which I’m quite sure will eventually become a mandate as these types of insidious things often do. 

The high mucky-mucks at these particular schools are asking their students to refrain from wearing so-called ‘celebratory clothing’; clothes, buttons, t-shirts and the like, which are given to kids who attend birthday parties or other celebrations. The kids then wear these adornments to school as a kind of badge of honor; a way to show they attended the event. 

Apparently, this ‘celebratory clothing memento thing’ is all the rage. The whole idea sounds rather ludicrous to me, but what do I know; I’m about as trendy as Bennett Brauer.    

So if in their infinite wisdom the public schools have their druthers, there will soon be no celebratory t-shirts or lapel pins nor any other outward signs or expressions of joy for having been one of the fortunate attendees at little Billy’s birthday party at the peril of those poor little ones who were 'scorned.'

Are these people serious! Good grief! These do-gooders claim to be educators, but what the heck does this teach our children? 

Our kids have to learn that not everyone is included in every social event that takes place. Not everyone is invited to all the parties. Not everyone is picked for  

Not everyone makes the . Not everyone can be the class and there’s a better than average chance someone else will be the Prom Queen or King. When these kids go off to , the PC Police won’t be there to prop up their deeply bruised, deflated egos when Delta Kappa Epsilon doesn’t accept them as a pledge.                                                                                

Our kids need to understand that not everyone will live in a big house and have a big fancy car. They need to know that not everyone will get the job of their dreams and that it’s a distinct possibility that the guy in the next cubicle may get promoted before they do. 

That’s called life, and no, life isn’t fair. Our kids need to learn that! We did! I don’t recall being coddled; do you?

So I guess there’s another notch in the ever-expanding belt of social engineering! I suppose that’s what we should expect when we have a government that promotes the entitlement mindset; a government that believes we’re incapable of knowing what’s best for ourselves and that we should be dependent upon them for our every need. 

Listen up kids! Don’t worry about not being on the ‘A-list’. It may seem like a major downer right now, but you’ll get over it – and you’ll be a better person for it – stronger, more able to cope with life. In time, you’ll come to understand that high school cliques and popularity contests have absolutely nothing to do with reality. 

Being in with the in-crowd isn’t all it’s cracked up to be, and all the angst and trepidation you may experience from being snubbed by the quasi-elitists at your school won’t mean squat once you get out into the real world. 

It’s possible that the most popular kid in your class could turn out to be a degenerate good-for-nothing, while the kid who sat quietly in the back of the room and never spoke to anyone - the one everyone thought was a dweeb - turns out to be the next Bill Gates.

The important thing is to. Don’t let someone else dictate your life’s path. It belongs to you, and you’re the one who determines who and what you will become. You don’t need some pugnacious benefactor to protect you. The truth is - they’re hurting you! 

My youngest grandson, Ethan, is learning how to walk. His mom, my daughter, Kelly, holds his hands and guides him along for a few steps and then lets him go. He stumbles along for another step or two, maybe three or four on a good day, before he tumbles into her arms or falls unceremoniously to the floor. 

It’s a difficult, sometimes painful process, but Ethan will never learn to walk on his own if Kelly doesn’t let go of his hands. 

Our greatest lessons in life are oftentimes learned through pain and disappointment. 

This is what we should be teaching our children! And by ‘we’, I’m not referring to our schools. Teaching children about life is the job of the parent! 

Our schools are best left to carrying out their responsibilities - teaching math and English - and butting out where they don’t belong!

Make it a great week! 

Bob Havey is an Easton-based freelance writer and a consummate trouble-maker. His column, The Way I See It, runs every other Wednesday at Norton Patch and his column, "The View From Here", appears each Tuesday at Easton Patch and on Wednesday at Mansfield Patch.

Nancy Zilch February 01, 2012 at 05:12 PM
Well, there are two children that I know that LOVE to read. . . one in 1st grade and another in 3rd. . . the one in 3rd got a rave review from her teacher. . . they both have to read at least 15 minutes a day for homework. . . along with the usual aother things. . .
Vilma Sceusa February 01, 2012 at 05:31 PM
Enjoyed your column today as well! Yes, I agree about all the unnecessary coddling but I do think there is a general lack of sensitivity regarding those who have been invited and those who haven't. I'm talking about young children here. To me it seems like plain old common courtesy not to flaunt a party that young children may have not been invited to. Before you accuse me of being overprotective, I am always a realist. When my daughter was in the fifth grade and I made the mistake of passing by this wonderful sky-high jumping contraption in a classmate's yard and she was one of maybe three children not invited to this party, I reminded her that she was not friends with this child and it was unlikely that this child would be on any party list of hers. I believe that it is wise not to flaunt these events and parading around in school is flaunting. Some kids are shy or just going through a hard time. Why bring it to school? Let's talk about what's really ridiculous! Did you ever have pins or clothing made in your honor?
Jasmine February 01, 2012 at 06:10 PM
Oh how love this column today! I was thinking about this the other day when I heard about some really crazy and scary stuff happening at out schools. Your column has just help solidify the conclusion I've already come too, If by change I one day decide to have children they will be HOME SCHOOLED! I can't believe the amount of crap that goes on in schools theses day. Thank heavens I grew up when I did because I know I have a brain. It's so sad what our "future" generation looks like.
John Havey February 01, 2012 at 07:57 PM
I saw this story on the news, incredible. It goes right along with giving kids ribbons after sporting events just because they participated, what? We can't keep score anymore in some youth sporting events because the losing team may feel bad, really? I coached Pop Warner Football several years ago and was told I could score no more than 28 points so it didn't look bad for the other team. How about the other team stopping us? Isn't that what the game is about? I'd feel worse knowing the other team quit in order to make me look good.So what's next, kids can't wear jackets signifying they won championships, after all, the other kids don't have one. How about kids that proudly display their school athletic jackets that they earned? What about clothing with soccer camps, football camps, etc that they attended proudly? Concert t shirts should be banned too because not everyone got to attend the concert. Do away with honor rolls, test grades, report cards and anything else that may differentiate you from some else. Lets all have the same clothes, cars, food,and income too. We wonder why America is going in the direction it's going? Isn't it obvious, we haven't prepared our children for the real world, and tried to put a big plastic bubble over them so they feel no dissapointment, sadness, etc....hoooray we all win, happy happy. What a joke!
ELAINE NORDBERG ROCK June 25, 2012 at 03:34 AM
Bob hit the nail on the head w/ his mighty hammer again! BE YOURSELF, You need not belong to everything, be invited or included in everything to be 'OK and happy and successful in life. In fact YOU may be better off NOT doing any of these things & doing your own thing! The 'cliques' in school often end up being the 'dumb clucks' in life!! Popularity isn't everything, trust me! SCHOOLS SHOULD BE TEACHING and not 'running feel good' seminars! Stop the BS & TEACH while PARENTS should be PARENTS WHO TEACH AT HOME and not their kids 'best friends'! Earn respect and become better parents and teachers!

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