It's Come to This: Hugs Banned at Maryland Schools

Katie Pavlich

3/19/2013 12:50:00 PM - Katie Pavlich

Some people say California is the most liberal, progressive state in the country but I beg to differ. Maryland is far worse and its newly implemented ban on hugging and passing out birthday invitations at schools (so people don't get their feelings hurt) has just proved my point.

New rules for visitors to St. Mary’s County public elementary schools ban hugs and homemade food to anyone other than a parent’s own child.

The guidelines, which are now in effect, limit the activities of some volunteers, school officials said, but are needed to ensure a safe environment.

A committee of several parents and principals from elementary schools in St. Mary’s County met four times last fall to review and recommend new best practices for schools to follow.

And yes, Maryland is the same state where a nine-year-old was suspended because his half eaten pop-tart was shaped like a gun.

About a week ago, 7-year-old Josh Welch was suspended from his Maryland school for two days after biting a Pop-Tart into the shape of a gun.

"It was already a rectangle and I just kept on biting it and biting it and tore off the top and it kinda looked like a gun but it wasn't," Welch told Baltimore Fox station WBFF. "All I was trying to do was turn it into a mountain but, it didn't look like a mountain really and it turned out to be a gun kinda."

Not to mention, Maryland is doing everything it can to allow the state to raise kids by keeping parents out of schools.

The new guidelines limit lunchtime and recess visits, ban handing out birthday invitations at school and prohibit visits during the school day by younger siblings.

“We think it’s the right balance between safety and parental involvement,” said Kelly Hall, executive director of elementary schools and Title I.

She said that elementary principals had reported many issues related to school visitors.

“At the same time, parents were expressing some concerns,” Hall said.

Parents should not approach teachers for a conference while visiting, according to the rules. Those meetings should be scheduled ahead of time.

Siblings of students are not allowed to visit the school with the parent during the school day. It was unclear this week if exceptions would be made for student performances where parents and others are invited.

In case you needed another argument for homeschooling, there you have it.