British School Will No Longer Tolerate the Incredible Danger of School Children Touching Snow


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It may have come time to abandon the phrase snowflakes — you know, the name for overly coddled children who are victims of helicopter parenting and schooling who end up becoming the overly coddled adults who demand helicopter governance.

I say this not because the term is inapt or offensive. I say this merely because the next generation of snowflakes may not actually be able to touch the substance for which they’re named, at least during school hours.

This is, admittedly, a bit of a stretch in the hyperbole department. However, if the new policy of the Jo Richardson Community School in the Dagenham section of London ends up catching on, we could see a lot more kids spending their recess on a rock-salted blacktop, told to stay far away from any frozen water. (Probably enveloped in bubble wrap, because that asphalt is hard.)

“It only takes one student, one piece of grit, one stone in a snowball in an eye, with an injury and we change our view,” Ges Smith, headmaster at Joe Richardson Community School, said in an interview on “Good Morning, Britain.”

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Smith added that it was a “duty of care issue,” according to the U.K. Telegraph.

The anchors — or, as the Brits like to say, presenters — challenged him on the ludicrous policy.

“It’s only a bit of fun, let us throw a snowball,” Susanna Reid said.

“If it was that simple, I’d let them throw snowballs all day long,” Smith said.

Do you think this policy on snow is ridiculous?

Well, it is that simple. So get your gloves on, put on a hat, and — oh wait, no. He doesn’t think it’s that simple.

“The rules are don’t touch the snow. If you don’t touch the snow you’re not going to throw it,” Smith said, adding that wet snow leaves kids “unfit for school.”

Generations of children were able to have recess in the snow for decades upon decades — probably even nigh on a century, at this point. They threw snowballs at each other, they had fun, they built snowmen, they engaged their creativity out in the white stuff. Only now, in 2018, does this make children “unfit for school.” Apparently, we’ve all collectively gone back in time to an era where snow pants, boots and coats have yet to be discovered.

Meanwhile, Piers Morgan — who appears to only be capable of displaying logic when he’s in ol’ Blighty, much to the consternation of his former employers at CNN — said that such policies produced kids “unprepared for normal life.”

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While London isn’t exactly known for its blizzards, Mr. Smith and his snow-loathing retinue at the Jo Richardson Community School are now much in the news because the capital of the U.K. — as well of most of Britain — is now experiencing a severe bout of winter weather.

One hopes that, if they do have the day off, they’re probably gallivanting about in the white stuff, snowballs whizzing past their ears, sledding down hills with nothing more than a knit cap as a helmet, building snowmen without asking permission first. And you know what? They’re doing fine — perhaps with a little supervision from parents, but they’re still able to do all the things we did as kids without being injured.

When they come back to school on Monday, however, they’ll be under the eye of a headmaster who thinks the stuff is so dangerous it can’t even be touched.

Maybe we’ve had it wrong all along. It’s not the kids who are snowflakes — at least, not at first. It’s officious educators like Ges Smith who are the real problem.

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C. Douglas Golden is a writer who splits his time between the United States and Southeast Asia. Specializing in political commentary and world affairs, he's written for Conservative Tribune and The Western Journal since 2014.
C. Douglas Golden is a writer who splits his time between the United States and Southeast Asia. Specializing in political commentary and world affairs, he's written for Conservative Tribune and The Western Journal since 2014. Aside from politics, he enjoys spending time with his wife, literature (especially British comic novels and modern Japanese lit), indie rock, coffee, Formula One and football (of both American and world varieties).
Morristown, New Jersey
Catholic University of America
Languages Spoken
English, Spanish
Topics of Expertise
American Politics, World Politics, Culture