Dodgeball ban at New Hampshire school district after bullying
Fox News: A New Hampshire school district has banned dodgeball and other “human target” activities over concerns about violence and bullying. The school board in Windham voted 4-1 last week to remove the game and nine others from the district’s curriculum.
The Eagle-Tribune reports the board voted after a committee of physical education teachers studied the issue. A middle school parent complained his child was bullied during a dodgeball game. The committee recommended eliminating the game, and others, including prison ball, slaughter, and bombardment.
“We spend a lot of time making sure our kids are violence free,” Windham superintendent Dr. Henry LaBranche said. “Here we have games where we use children as targets. That seems to be counter to what we are trying to accomplish with our anti-bullying campaign.”
School Board member Dennis Senibaldi cast the sole vote against the ban. “We have rules that are set in place to deal with bullying,” he said. “We don’t need to ban an entire round of games just to enforce those rules.”
The National Association for Sport and Physical Education said there are any number of reasons to drop dodgeball. “It’s an elimination game,” said Andrew Mead, program manager at NASPE. “Games like dodgeball and tag don’t keep kids involved and physically active. They objectify slower students who don’t catch as well.”
Senibaldi offered a solution. “We could just do it on a point system,” he said. “So, no one gets knocked out right away.”
From the school district web page:
Our mission is to be a continuously improving, learning community, providing quality services to enable all children to master the knowledge and competencies necessary to function skillfully throughout life.
Hate to tell the school district but life can be an elimination system. Not everyone excels in sports. Not everyone can catch very well. Not everyone is going to get the job. Welcome to the real world. Best to teach your children the skills to deal with it.
Windham School District
19 Haverhill Road, Windham, NH 03087