Letter to the Editor

'Jacket rule' is wrong

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Dear Editor,

I have nieces and nephews that attend school in McCook. I recently became aware of a "jacket rule" that is surprising. It seems that if children as young as second graders, forget their coat at recess, they are not allowed to go back in and retrieve them, no matter what the weather. This, according to the principal, is a rule. I believe it neglectful at the least.

On Friday, Oct. 29, in 52 degree windchill, a parent witnessed numerous children asking to go get their jackets/coats, and were told no. She asked the ladies supervising why the children were not allowed to go in for their coats even though it was cold and they were shivering. She was informed that it was a rule, that the children knew they should bring their coats, and if they don't they just have to deal with it.

The following was taken from the website http://www.child-abuse-effects.com/signs-of-child-neglect.html "...Children are dependent on adults from the time they are born. The absence of some or all the basic needs determines whether or not neglect exists. (Appropriate clothing is a basic need) Clothing must be clean and appropriate for the weather: warm coat and boots for winter, and adequate clothing to protect from other outdoor elements. This is one of the signs of child neglect that is most often noticed."

The school board meeting will be on Nov. 8 at 6 p.m. in the junior high conference room. Wake up, parents. Some things are just not right.

Barbara Fickle

via e-mail

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  • Of course, I can see the slogan now. Pneumonia... a good learning lesson.

    -- Posted by McCook1 on Wed, Nov 3, 2010, at 1:11 PM
  • I agree. You should teach your child that if he/she takes one to school, it is to be used, not left hanging up inside. Sounds like lessons being learned. Now maybe the parents will teach their children the same lesson.

    -- Posted by Rural Citizen on Wed, Nov 3, 2010, at 1:12 PM
  • My son was among one of the many children that forgot their coat on that day. He knew better then to even ask to go inside and retrieve it. I have said many times that I do agree about responsibility being taught. But, it should not, in my opinion, be taught in such a neglectful way.

    Responsibility is huge. What about having the responsibility of retrieving your coat/jacket without running, or disturbing other classrooms, or lunches? Is that too big a responsibility to trust a child with? Yet they are expected to have the responsibility to remember their coat everyday without mishap? It seems a little rough to punish a child for having a forgetful moment.

    Everyone parents different. I myself do send a coat with my child with the intention of him wearing it. However, if he forgets it that day in his locker, in the midst of the many school lessons being learned, he should not be punished, and made uncomfortable because of it.

    I have my opinions, as well do other parents that choose to parent differently then I. If you choose to let your child suffer it out in the cold, then that is your choice. I for one feel it is my responsibility as that child's parent to protect them from the elements, this one being the weather.

    I have spoken to Mrs. Baumbach about this issue, as I have urged other concerned parents to do. I was informed that the rule would not be changing however it would just become mandatory that the children wear their coats outside from now on. This corrects the problem to a degree. However the last two days have been warm, and now the children have to wear their coats in the 70+ degree weather.

    There has got to be a way to fix this issue without further problems being caused. I am not a teacher, principal, or on the school board for a reason. I do not have all the answers to such problems. But I do think this is an issue worth being addressed.

    Always, just my humble opinion.

    Theresa Steinbeck

    -- Posted by Theresa Steinbeck on Wed, Nov 3, 2010, at 3:46 PM
  • The school can't make 100% of the people happy 100% of the time. Rules are made for a reason. It's more about teaching children responsibility and making good decisions. No they aren't too young to understand with proper guidance.

    -- Posted by Rural Citizen on Wed, Nov 3, 2010, at 4:23 PM
  • I am a parent also and had my son standing outside in the cold without his jacket and was not able to go get it. Just to note he missed a day of school the week before for being sick and was on antibiotics that day!

    I also believe the children should be taught some responsibility, but that being said, there is a better way to do it. An 8 year old that has been inside the school building all day is not going to know what the weather is like after lunch.

    Making the children take their coats every day does solve some of this issue, but in the case they forget it and need to go get it, they should be allowed to do so!

    -- Posted by Sarah Kinne on Wed, Nov 3, 2010, at 4:46 PM
  • I too am a parent of a child at the elementary and I expect her to remember her coat at recess time. They do get distracted and forget, but one time outside without it is a good lesson. Now then it wasn't bitterly cold on the day in question so don't think that there was any neglect involved. Plus, its a proven fact that colds don't start from being too cold. Colds are viruses.

    But think about it this way, can you imagine even a dozen kids out of the 400+ that are enrolled up there going in to get a coat they forgot? Interuption to other classes, more room for mischief without supervision that is out on the playground.

    Maybe a reminder from the classroom teacher as they go out the door from the classroom would be better than requiring them to take their coats every time and possibly help those who forget. And then would follow the rule of not being allowed back in to get a coat.

    I think we need to focus more on their learning and remember that's what they are there for. Not to occupy the administrators and teachers and paras time with trying to change rules because some children don't remember a coat now and then.

    -- Posted by susanne_1989 on Wed, Nov 3, 2010, at 5:59 PM
  • It sounds to Ms. Fickle, your best choice will be home-schooling. In the comfort and security of your home, you can absolve his/her responsibilities of staying warm when going outside. This way you can insure he/she is clean after going to the restroom, his/her use of hand sanitizer, making sure of his/her using facial wipes. These are risks that cannot be taken. This practice can go on into the teen years. Maybe into adulthood. But at least, you can always be sure.

    -- Posted by Dudley Dawson on Wed, Nov 3, 2010, at 7:10 PM
  • Is this a joke? Are people really this rude when they assume they are right? I have never posted anything in the opinion of the paper for fear of my "opinions" being attacked by rude people.

    I think the people that are attacking the opinion's of others are totally missing the point, and unnecessarily being plain rude! Just because it is not in your "parenting lesson", does not make it any less important then mine, and many others! The point of the matter is not about the parent sending or not sending a coat. It is not about holding there hands while they are at school. It is not about absolving any sort of responsibilities. It is not about any of the things others are so violently suggesting!

    My point in the issue is the fact that a child is made suffer for being forgetful. It is not only a one time problem. If the child forgets again, they are made suffer again! It is not a matter of the weather being 50 degrees, or 30! They are NOT allowed to get their coat regardless of the temperature! It is a "rule" set by the management of the school period.

    I for one am not OK with the school teaching my kids painful, neglectful, responsibilities! My children attend school for more hours then they are at home. I expect the school to have the best interest of my child in mind! Not to let them suffer because they are cold.

    Call the child abuse hotline! I as a parent can report you as a parent for not allowing your child a way to get warm for neglect. It is the same thing here happening with our children.

    I will not bash anyones opinions on the matter. If you are OK with your child being cold because they forgot their coat, then great! More power to you! HOWEVER I am not OK with it, and I deserve just as much respect for my opinion as well!

    Now, I threw out the bone...undoubtedly I will be attacked again, unfortunately in the case of screen names, I do not have a right to face my accuser!

    Waiting for it...

    Theresa Steinbeck

    -- Posted by Theresa Steinbeck on Wed, Nov 3, 2010, at 8:07 PM
  • How about this one, if they forget their coats, they get sent inside and no recess. Or is that too violent?

    -- Posted by Dudley Dawson on Wed, Nov 3, 2010, at 8:50 PM
  • I for one was not bashing anyone's opionion. I merely stated a few facts and even gave a possible suggestion to help the children remember.

    The teachers and paras are very busy up there with many kids at one time. It is difficult to tend to each one on one at recess time. The children are anxious for a break and some play time outside.

    Furthermore, I don't think any person there would make a child suffer serious consequences. I have never worried about the safety and well being of my kids while attending school.

    It is your right however to address your concerns in the proper chain of command so to speak.

    Thinking back to my grade school days, which were not here in McCook, I don't believe we were allowed back into the school during recess time unless we had gotten hurt or the like. I don't see that I suffered any harm and pry learned quickly to remember my coat. And I'll just say that was a few moons ago, lol.

    When replying to opionons or replies in the paper in an online format, you should expect that some people are not as skilled in tact as others. I respect that people have different opinions and try very hard not to attack said opinions.

    -- Posted by susanne_1989 on Wed, Nov 3, 2010, at 9:01 PM
  • Theresa:

    You go girl! You are absolutely right!

    Why can't the solution be the teacher simply saying to her/his class, "Does everyone have their coat on?" How about, "We're not going out until everyone has their coat!" A simple reminder, that's it.

    Sure, there's always someone who is habitually forgetful. I have children who are habitually forgetful. I'M habitually forgetful! I have a husband who forgets to put a jacket on the kids because HE oftentimes doesn't wear a coat himself. Maybe children are forgetful for the simple fact that they're young. Maybe it's because they are distracted. Whatever the case or reason, a child should not be made to endure the bitter cold to be taught a lesson.

    If my child was made to shiver in the cold, I'd be having a serious one-on-one with the teacher and administration.

    Sure the main focus is learning but our kids are in the CARE of their teachers and we trust those teachers to do what is best for our kids when we can't be there with them.

    -- Posted by MakingApoint on Wed, Nov 3, 2010, at 9:19 PM
  • I do agree here this is absolutly stupid even the Junior High kids can go get there jackets if they ask. so come on why are we not letting elementry kids. I know the Junior High allows this cause I have been there. I am in agreeance here that this needs brought up to the school board.

    -- Posted by Caitlyn on Wed, Nov 3, 2010, at 9:29 PM
  • To Chunky Peanut Butter,

    Nope not to violent at all. In fact, I suggested that. At least they would be out of the cold. Like I said to begin with, I am all for consequences of the action, just not ones to this extreme.

    To susanne_1989,

    Thank you for your kind opinion! :) I do realize that you were not one of the few that were being harsh. I just do not like to be attacked for standing up for something that I personally do not feel is right. That is why I thought it was an opinion, and stated so numerous times in my original post.

    I would also like to say that I have talked to the management, (in this case the principal) of the school. There has been a new email sent to the teachers requiring them to insist that kids take their coat out with them every time they are to exit the building. Though this is fixing the problem to a degree, I am going to schedule a meeting with the management of the school, and offer a solution that I have researched, and feel can really work! That way kids are not forced to wear their coats when it is to warm out, (because they must either a) wear them, or b) tie them around their waist. They cannot lay them down somewhere once outside with it.)and they will still have the option of putting them on when it is cold!

    A happy medium for all is what I am aiming for!

    Theresa Steinbeck

    -- Posted by Theresa Steinbeck on Wed, Nov 3, 2010, at 9:57 PM
  • I remember it was 3rd grade and it was cold enough to see your breath when the teacher said "Children, get your coats" I said I didn't want a coat and she informed me that I wouldn't be able to go in and get one if I changed my mind. It took about 5 minutes before I had to humble myself and ask the dreaded question... "Mrs. Johnson, may I go get my coat please?". "I warned you." Was her answer, followed by "No".

    Needless to say I learned several lessons THAT day.

    1. It's better to be safe than sorry.

    2. Be accountable for your actions / decisions.

    3. If you stay out of the wind on a cold day, the air feels about 15 degrees warmer.

    4. If you get out of the wind AND find a spot in the sun, 20 degrees warmer.

    I still remember that day, the partly cloudy sky, the brisk north western wind, and the fun that the other kids made of me at the time.

    Was it cruel? Maybe, at the time I was certain that it was, but was Mrs. Johnson the bad guy? No. She not only gave me options, she warned me of the circumstances.

    I remember being SO MAD at Mrs. Johnson, not because she kept me out in the cold, but because I was too scared to risk a coatless recess even though I wanted to teach her a lesson. I never did.

    I did eventually work up a tolerance to frigid weather just to spite old Mrs. Johnson, but she never seemed to take note of my bold and brave efforts. Hmmm, yet another lesson learned, I'm apparently NOT the center of everyone's world.

    You will see me to this day, in blowing snow, scooping snow off the walk in a t-shirt.

    I wonder how many of those children "forgot" their coats twice.

    I would assume that prior to going to recess, the teacher might say "Children, put your coats on". If that IS the case then I don't really think that "forgetting" the coat was the issue, perhaps a misjudgment, but as I learned, It's better to be safe than sorry, a credo that I live by and in almost every of life's situations.

    I'm not truly sure that 50 degree temperatures are to be considered bitter however. I have noticed a majority of the kids today with what I call a "safety net attitude", which is to say.... "If I make a mistake, it's alright because someone will get me out of trouble." That may be this country's undoing.... people that aren't concerned about how responsible and or accountable they are. I think that lesson is learned young and is rewarded later in the adult life if by no other means than the self satisfaction of knowing that you are in control of yourself for good or for bad. (Depending on the decisions you make)

    As it's been said before, different strokes for different folks. Today's society seems to weigh heavy on the side of sheltering the children, I would have to say it's better to learn lessons that build character over keeping my children constantly supported by a safety net and by extension short on accountability.

    -- Posted by Nick Mercy on Wed, Nov 3, 2010, at 10:01 PM
  • bigdawg,

    No. In fact anything below freezing I do not think the children are let outside for at all. However if you have questions on the rule, you should really give the principal at the McCook Elementary School a call. I am sure you will be informed as I was that it has been a rule in place for a long, long time.

    I am just one of many concerned parents that is trying to figure out a way to fix the situation from future incidents happening. :)

    Theresa Steinbeck

    -- Posted by Theresa Steinbeck on Wed, Nov 3, 2010, at 10:53 PM
  • Children need to be taught responsibility and that there are consequences to their actions. "Actions" being defined as lying, cheating, stealing, hurting others, breaking the law etc etc. Since when has being forgetful been a wrongful action? I forget things all the time! That does not make me irresponsible! If I leave the house without my jacket and it's cold outside, I go get it! I remind my kids to wear their jackets/coats if it's cold, or better yet, I MAKE them wear them. That's our job as parents and/or persons responsible for the direct care of our children. Like Sarah mentioned earlier, they've been inside all day. They don't know if it's warm or cold outside in the afternoon. Haven't you ever had to step outside to "feel" the weather before deciding whether or not you should take your jacket?

    When you get in a vehicle with your young child, do you remind him/her to buckle up? Or do you choose to "teach them responsibility" and suffer the consequences when he/she is ejected??

    ~Amber Hubl~

    -- Posted by jahubl on Thu, Nov 4, 2010, at 12:16 AM
  • Can anyone tell me if the teacher tells the students to put on their coat? I don't have any children in the elementary so I can't ask. Again, if the teacher tells them to put on their coat before they go out to recess and they "forget" to put their coats on sometime between when the teacher gets done saying it, during the process when the other kids are putting their coats on, and finally while they stand in line to go out to recess, then I just have to say, either that child isn't listening, not aware of their surroundings, or chooses NOT to put the coat on, forgetting isn't really the issue. Unless things have changed dramatically since I was in school, the teacher really doesn't leave a student enough time to "forget" to get ready for the upcoming task or event.

    "Students, we'll be going for recess in half an hour, please remember to put on your coat before we line up to go."

    That doesn't sound right does it?

    -- Posted by Nick Mercy on Thu, Nov 4, 2010, at 1:27 AM
  • I have to tend to agree with bigdawg. I don't think this situation is that serious. I asked my daughter this morning if her classroom teacher reminded them every time they went to recess to get their coats and she said every time they head out the door for recess, they are reminded.

    Not to make light of anyone's concerns, but I think there are more serious matters that need attention than letting the kids back in the building for a coat they were probably reminded of before heading out the door. They go out to play unless the temp is below either 5 or 10 degrees. Notes come home from school weekly reminding parents to make sure their children have proper clothing to play outside at these temperatures.

    I wish those of you well in your quest to find a middle ground on this issue.

    -- Posted by susanne_1989 on Thu, Nov 4, 2010, at 8:02 AM
  • Nick,

    When I talked to the principal of the school, I was understanding that in pre-K and 1st teachers required jackets to be worn on cold days. When the child is in 2nd and 3rd grade they are then given the responsibility to wear it or not. In fact, on the day in question a little girl, (whom had asked, and had been told no about getting her coat) had told me very maturely, "I know its a rule and all, but I just didn't know it was THIS cold out here".

    I know, in my case personally, my son has one of the new teachers, whom was not aware that there was a rule about going back in to retrieve his/her coat. I can also tell you that recently due to this issue, teachers have now been told that coats are mandatory to be put on now any time there is a recess/lunch break. Why is it now mandatory? It is mandatory because someone with higher authority agrees that no child should be made be cold for a punishment.

    I understand the reasoning behind the rule. That there is just not enough para's/teachers to assist the children on getting their coats. I agree with the responsibility part of the child in all of this. I agree that there should be a consequence as well. It just hurt my heart that day personally seeing so many children huddled together like little penguins trying to stay warm, shivering. I know that it was not "freezing" per say on that day temperature wise, but the wind was blowing with gusts of up to 36 miles an hour, and it was bitterly cold. In fact, I retrieved my sons coat for him, and he ended up letting a little girl, that was huddled against me wear his coat, and I gave him mine. Then I stood there and froze myself. So I do know first hand how cold it was.

    Bigdawg,

    I don't think you can compare forgetting to put your coat on to the adult responsibility of picking someone up at the airport, taking prescriptions, or especially drunk driving. Those are adult actions versus a child's forgetfulness. I know at least for my 8 year old, that he is not currently driving, medicating himself, nor drinking alcohol at this time in his life.

    -- Posted by Theresa Steinbeck on Thu, Nov 4, 2010, at 8:12 AM
  • If this rule has been in place for a "long, long time" as someone states, then why do you think it's all of a sudden a problem? The teacher's are reminding the students before they go out about a coat. If the child doesn't get it, who's fault is that? The child needs to accept a learn responsibility for their own actions. I agree with Nick...Today's society seems to weigh heavy on the side of sheltering the children. Teach them responsibility and accountability.

    -- Posted by Rural Citizen on Thu, Nov 4, 2010, at 8:18 AM
  • Your right bigdawg, school was not in session for McCook Public Schools. Teachers in-service and parent teacher conference. And, 52 degrees isn't going to make a child sick if they're out in it for a 15 minute recess if THEY forgot their coat.

    -- Posted by Rural Citizen on Thu, Nov 4, 2010, at 9:26 AM
  • I stand corrected on ONE point. The date in question was Wednesday, October 27th, 2010. The high for that day was about 52 degrees but the wind was bitter and blowing. THAT (windchill) is what made it so cold. And yes, unfortunately, it was in McCook.

    -- Posted by Barbara Fickle on Thu, Nov 4, 2010, at 9:46 AM
  • Still. It's called accountability. And in that short of time, if they forget once...they probably won't forget the 2nd time!

    -- Posted by Rural Citizen on Thu, Nov 4, 2010, at 10:32 AM
  • This will be my last response in the public opinion. I did not start off with my opinion to be attacked or debate the issue over and over again with the same people. I was simply stating my feelings on an issue, and trying to inform other parents of a rule that may not have been known about.

    I think the rule that has been in place for a "long, long time" has not been an issue because the simple reality of it is, our children accept rules as a part of life, and do not know any better to argue them or even in this case inform the parent of them. A child is groomed to adapt to his surrounding and not question the authority of his life, but to simply follow the rules.

    I am also sure that this is not a year around issue. It most likely occurs when the weather is starting to change from warm to freezing, and when the freezing then starts to change to warm again.

    Children do not have access to computers with weather info, or phones with mobile updates. I know the first two days of this week it was cold enough outside for a coat in the a.m when my child went to school, but by lunch time it was 70+ degrees.

    I too agree with Nicks statement about todays society weighing heavy on the side of sheltering children. That being said, I do not feel that me wanting my child to be warm during their day at school is any less important then you wanting your child to suffer it out if he/she forgot their coat. People parent differently, to each their own. Things were done differently "back in the day". When kids acted out, or acted irresponsibly they had a ruler taken to their hands, or caning took place. Those things cause harm to children, and were eventually changed.

    My point being that this has been only my opinion from the very beginning. Agree or disagree with it and move on, as I will now do. In fact I am going to try and be proactive about the problem at hand, and am having a meeting with the principal tomorrow to discuss an option that I think will satisfy all involved.

    Thank you all for you opinions. That is what makes this great country what it is today!

    Bigdawg,

    I sincerely hope that you would not witness a child being hit by a car and allow your child, or any child for that matter to lay there for an extended amount of time before you seek help, in hopes of teaching them to look both ways before crossing the street the next time. I also hope the same would apply to letting a child lay there after hitting their head on the ground with no helmet on.

    Thank you all, and have a great day!

    Theresa Steinbeck

    -- Posted by Theresa Steinbeck on Thu, Nov 4, 2010, at 10:37 AM
  • I wasn't attacking you or your opinions however maybe parents need to step back and look at all the responsibilities the teachers have to do and remember for 30+ children. Maybe a little tough love is just what a child needs to remember the "next time".

    Things may have been done differently back in the day, but at least there was alot more respect. Something that is rarely found in older students today towards teachers, parents, co-workers, etc.

    -- Posted by Rural Citizen on Thu, Nov 4, 2010, at 11:02 AM
  • I would like to say a few things in closing. Keep in mind, citizens of McCook, this is only my opinion and not an issue of "national security"! (lol)

    I believe in accepting responsibility for the consequences of one's actions and words. I believe in teaching lessons in non-negligent manners. In ways that have the possible consequence of teaching empathy and concern for others (qualities that are not easily found in society).

    To those of who posted using your REAL name, hats off to you. You did this despite the fact that your opinion is not supported by the majority of the boldly ANONYMOUS people posting comments here. Congratulations for have the courage to honestly and frankly state your "opinion".

    To those who hide behind the non-consequential position of anonymous (but humorous) screen names, I suggest that your opinions would NOT be stated so rudely, sarcastically and apathetically had you had the courage to put your real name behind them. Hiding behind a screen name only serves to provide lack of accountability.

    If I see a child with a reasonable need, I will do what I can to reasonably meet that need. There are those who will not. As Moliere so eloquently put it, "It is not only what we do, but also what we do not do, for which we are accountable."

    And finally, by all means, attend the public school board meeting! Of course, no screen names allowed!

    Have a wonderful day,

    BARBARA FICKLE

    -- Posted by Barbara Fickle on Thu, Nov 4, 2010, at 11:20 AM
  • I have to admit that seeing my child in a position of discomfort is quite disturbing in my minds eye. If he or she were standing out in the cold shivering because of a forgotten coat, I would stop, discuss the matter with the attending teacher, escort my child inside and repremand or more likely, discuss where things went wrong on their part. Then expect he or she to remain in the school and miss recess. I know my own children and so I'm sure what the result would be.... It might happen again BUT my child would know that this was their own fault. I'd never hear about it from them.

    I suspect that if things are in proper order, forgetting isn't an option. Did I understand correctly that children aren't allowed to take their coats off if their too warm? THAT'S a bigger concern as the child made provisions to cover the multiple possible weather conditions (being responsible) but then their options are taken away from them.

    I tied my coat around my waist often as a child but it wasn't because the school wouldn't let me put it on the ground but because if I didn't go home with it I'd been skinned by my Mom then sent to school the next day without a coat. (We only had 1 coat each. I suppose I could have worn her sweater but I'm pretty sure THAT wasn't going to happen if I had anything to do with it)

    Eddy,

    Mrs Johnson wasn't perfect, but I can still remember what I learned from her. I'd say that's a sign of a good teacher! Shockingly, I'm still around today some 32 years later and I look back with reverance on that day because it really has effected my life in a positive way.

    I'm not overly concerned of your comment though as I'm pretty sure I saw your posting on another page.... What was it you said? "**** those child labor laws!". I thought it was sarcasm at first but after rereading your comment, I kind of think it wasn't. Whatever.

    -- Posted by Nick Mercy on Thu, Nov 4, 2010, at 1:44 PM
  • So I suppose next time your child goes to the restroom at the school, you want a teacher to go in and make sure he wiped and then washed their hands? You never know what kind of diseases he may catch if they don't remind him. IT'S CALLED COMMON SENSE

    -- Posted by Rural Citizen on Thu, Nov 4, 2010, at 1:46 PM
  • Theresa, welcome to the Gazetter blog, don't be surprised if you are called a racist bigot before too long since everyone is veiled in secrecy!

    I am a hard knocks father first and foremost. I believe that children today are being deprived of many valuable lessons that older generations HAD to learn and becasue of this will suffer.

    That's why I am the way I am with my kids. I am also a leader of kids that are not mine. I have to treat them differently to a certian extent because I'm NOT their parent.

    Having said that, I do believe that this is a good way to teach the kids to be more thoughtful about their own well-being instead of playing graba$$ all day.

    Unfortunately, I'm sure this playground rule stems more from a "Homeland Security" issue more than it does a "teachable moment issue." That makes the arguement from a lesson learning standpoint kind of meaningless as some are upholding the rule from a false premise.

    Here's the twist though, some younger kids, like my 6 year, need to be reminded first, about things like this. 6 year old boys are in another dimension. I'm not exactly sure what's racing through his mind most of the day and I don't remember when I was six what I thought about all day, but I don't think it was self-preservation!

    So, a 3rd grader needs to learn a lesson, plain and simple.

    A kindergardner and first grader probably need a little help from the teacher before they go outside. If those teachers are not warning them about the impending doom of winter winds when they get ready to go outside because they are too busy facebooking or tweeting before recess is over, we need to teach the teachers a lesson...not the kids.

    -- Posted by Justin76 on Thu, Nov 4, 2010, at 1:57 PM
  • Nick Mercy,

    Just to answer your question (even though I told myself I would not post anymore...)the children are not allowed to sat there jacket/coat down anywhere. Once they leave the classroom, and enter the commons area they are to keep their coat with them at all times. They do not "have" to wear it while playing, but they do have to have it on person somehow. That is what I am going to discuss tomorrow with the principal. A way to fix this situation with maybe adding coat hooks outside for the children to utilize. We shall see if it is an acceptable pro-active approach. I think that may be why a child may chance not taking a coat with them. I know that it would be inconvenience to myself to have to hull around a heavy winter coat in the lunch line, lunch table, and playground. (Not to mention that the arms of a coat are not long enough to reach and tie around my waist! lol)

    -- Posted by Theresa Steinbeck on Thu, Nov 4, 2010, at 2:18 PM
  • A simple reminder from the teacher to the entire class right before they go outside should be sufficient. If the child doesn't get his coat, who's fault is it then?

    -- Posted by Rural Citizen on Thu, Nov 4, 2010, at 2:24 PM
  • It's amazing how hundreds even thousands of students have gone through McCook Elementary Schools and have survived...

    -- Posted by Rural Citizen on Thu, Nov 4, 2010, at 2:31 PM
  • If people want to change something just go to the school board meeting in great multitude and tell them what you want done. After all who is paying their wage?

    -- Posted by cplcac on Thu, Nov 4, 2010, at 2:44 PM
  • So when I work 9am to 5pm, the school is in charge of my 3rd grade child. They are responsible. The teacher and/or the principal.

    So if it is 30 degrees out and ten kids forget their jackets and the teacher watching them doesn't let them go get their coat, I will get off work and show up with the police to have that teacher charged with ten counts of child neglect.

    That is the law and I will start hanging out around the school and get multiple teachers to lose their teaching licenses for being prosecuted with child neglect.

    If I let my child walk to school in 30 degree weather only wearing shorts and a t-shirt with shoes for 12 blocks, I would get child neglect. It has happened before and believe me, some teachers at this school will find out in the next two weeks what being arrested for child neglect it.

    They are responsible for my children when they are at school. That is the law. Now they will be arrested. See you soon!

    -- Posted by jhagg on Thu, Nov 4, 2010, at 2:57 PM
  • I just stumbled across this and some of the opinions sound pretty first hand. I am curious? Do any of you actually work for the McCook School District?

    -- Posted by STEPHEN FURTADO on Thu, Nov 4, 2010, at 3:35 PM
  • jhagg, It wasn't 30 degrees...it was 52! Let's go ahead and go after the teachers who have children in their class that have colds. These are the kids that are sick but the parents sent them anyway because they can't take care of them at home. It's got to be the teacher's fault now that your kid got sick from another student because they allowed them in their class. PASSING THE BUCK AGAIN? Like I said, a simple reminder before they head out should be sufficient. If not, it's their own fault.

    -- Posted by Rural Citizen on Thu, Nov 4, 2010, at 3:41 PM
  • It is safe to say that I am none to impressed with the untactful approach some of you "anonymous" people have taken. I respect your opinion that you don't care if your child is standing outside in the cold weather shivering. Those of us concerned about this "jacket rule" however, do care that our children have to suffer in the cold. If you don't care and this rule doesn't bother you, then find something else to do!! I was attacked on my previous comment about "wrongful actions" and I read the examples provided that you thought were comparible. All I have to say to that is I sincerely hope your child never forgets to look both ways when crossing the street!

    I agree that if they were reminded and forgot their coat or chose not to take it then they need to be held accountable!! There should be a consequence, such as they have to go back inside (where they can stay warm) and miss recess. I guarantee you a child is not going to continue to forget his coat if he continues to have to miss recess.

    None of my biological children will be going to McCook Elementary, however, I do have a five year old stepson who attends the school. Fortunately he is in Kindergarten right now so he for sure gets the reminder. But I'm here to tell ya that if I ever drove by the school and saw him standing outside freezing because he was not allowed back inside to retrieve his coat, I would NOT be a happy parent! Food for thought: Once outside and the children decide it's too cold and ask to get their coat. Isn't that taking responsibility right there? "I'm cold, I need warmer clothes"

    Another example: Your child breaks or forgets the rule about not playing with matches and accidentally burns himself. Would you light a match and make him hold his finger on it as punishment?? Nope, I doubt it. My guess is that he would receive a much needed spanking, or other form of punishment. (whatever your parenting style may be)

    I don't think it's fair to say that our teenagers are out of control and have no respect for their teachers or parents because of the responsible parents that may be concerned about their well-being in childhood. I think that's a whole other topic that relates more to lack of attention and definitely a lack of discipline!!

    As adults, we are to provide our children with food, shelter and CLOTHING! If any of one of us denied our children any of these things...it would be punishable by law.

    -- Posted by jahubl on Thu, Nov 4, 2010, at 4:36 PM
  • ~Amber Hubl~

    -- Posted by jahubl on Thu, Nov 4, 2010, at 4:37 PM
  • I must say, there are a lot of interesting conversations happening on this editorial website. Some of the issues are extremely important. I have mentioned a few examples and have quoted from them. I have also applied the authors same logic to this "jacket rule" issue. (Interesting to note is the amount of attention, anger and passive-aggression this subject has stirred up).

    I do, however, think that all this posting has done something very important; it has made people "talk" about the issue and will hopefully lead to a solution.

    Consider the number of posts for "No surprise in effects of cutting school junk food", Thursday, November 4, 2010, McCook Daily Gazette, 0 Posts... "While freedom of choice is a right to be protected in adults, limiting the range of choices of foods available to children (12th graders) in a school environment is the right choice." I say while freedom of not wearing a coat and freezing their butt off as a choice is a right to be protected in adults, limiting the range of choices (including freezing their butts off) available to children (in this case, 2nd graders) in a school environment is the right choice.

    "Hope and change, take two", Wednesday, November 3, 2010, Dawn Cribbs, 1 Post...

    "These are our representatives. We put them in office, not only with our votes but with our pocketbooks and with our eyes wide-open." I say, these are your Administrators, School Board Officials and Teachers. You put them there with your votes and your pocketbooks. If you don't like their rules, change the way you vote and who you pay to educate your children.

    "Private Citizens care", Wednesday, November 3, 2010, McCook Daily Gazette, 0 Posts...

    "There were countless times over the years that it was a regular citizen who actually solved the crime or otherwise 'saved the day... 'I still believe it's the people themselves that make the biggest difference." I say, maybe it will be a regular community member who actually comes up with a solution to this amazingly heated and debated issue. I also believe it is parents themselves that make the biggest difference. I hope they make the Board meeting.

    "Voters take a step toward future", Wednesday, November 3, 2010, McCook Daily Gazette, 0 Posts...

    "We trust cooperation for the good of the entire district will be the first order of business for the board." I say, I trust cooperation for the good of the children will be the first order of business for the board.

    We love this place, Tuesday, November 2, 2010, Dick Trail, 6 Posts...

    "...I also received a lot of flak from disgusted readers on the online blog version maintained by the Gazette. All of those bloggers of course demonstrated their courage by remaining anonymous..." Hey, didn't someone make that point today in this blog, too?

    Now, I could go on and on. I have yet to run across an editorial post that has caused this much dissention. My point is, weren't these parents just saying, "If it is cold enough that the people supervising are wearing their coats, please make sure my 7-8 year old child is wearing his or hers? If my child doesn't, then don't let him or her go out to play. "Johnny/Jane, it is cold out. If you do not wear your coat, you cannot go out to play. It's your choice." Period.

    Instead of appreciating the concern and looking for a solution that is in the best interest of the children, "concerned citizens" became outraged, insulting, offensive, immature and unwilling to work together.

    By the way, this letter to the editor has 44 posts as of the time I last checked! 44! Someone points out something that they think should be addressed and it causes this much turmoil?

    Some of you posted every hour on the hour.

    I sincerely hope that YOU are not working in the schools. I know my tax dollars are not meant to be paying you to partake in such frivolous and unproductive arguments during the workday.

    Remember, THIS IS ONLY MY OPINION. If you chose to blast me for it, at least have the guts to use your real name.

    -- Posted by STEPHEN FURTADO on Thu, Nov 4, 2010, at 5:00 PM
  • WELL SAID STEPHEN FURTADO!!!

    ~Amber Hubl~

    -- Posted by jahubl on Thu, Nov 4, 2010, at 5:12 PM
  • wow Theresa! You really know hao to stir up the crap pot lol!! hahaha.

    I agree with you, although my kids attend St. Pats. It is a much smaller school so this is not an issue. If a child forgets their coat they are absolutly able to go back and get it.

    That beeing said, I wonder about potty breaks. Arent they out roaming the halls then too? How do they address these? A hall pass perhaps? So why not a hall pass for coats? Like needing the restroom, I am sure there aren't too many that forget coats...I'm just sayin!

    Like I said, I dont know the rules at the public elementary schools. It is unfortunate the kids suffer because of class size, or lack of teacher/para avalibity.

    I have a 13 year old and a 9 year old. They are both very responsible, however they are still kids! I am still trying to get my 13 year old to at least wear a hoodie on chilly days so why should 7 and 8 year olds be expected to remember at all times?? lol God help us all!

    Tasha Allen

    -- Posted by tasha.allen69001 on Thu, Nov 4, 2010, at 5:35 PM
  • Ok, so WHEN do the children have to take their coats, I hear it's at lunch. WHY is that I ask..Is it because at lunch the children (NOT KIDS) are supervised by Para Professionals (aides) so the teacher can have a break? The children take their coats, sit on them while they eat? Why is that a rule? How many of these children spill on their coats? OK another entire issue.

    This is a rule that seems a bit "stupid". A child can not go their locker after finishing lunch to get a coat, hat, mittens before going outside?

    I guess I am asking why? What is going on down that hall that a child can not go to their locker??

    OR is because a child can not be trusted. Seems like a good time for a life lesson. You are trusted to walk to your locker AFTER you eat to get what you need to go outside. Seems like a fairly simple solution. That is what I did many years ago where I went to school and class sizes were 35-40 students and we ONLY had our teacher. No Lunch aides, no para professionals. Get a grip McCook Schools. Good job Theresa, Barbara, Sarah & Amber!!! You go girls!

    -- Posted by ALL4MCCOOK on Thu, Nov 4, 2010, at 5:38 PM
  • I do not have children in the elementary school so I am hoping this is an unbiased opinion. We live in Nebraska, we need a jacket when we leave home between the 7:00am-9:00am hour, by noon, it has warmed up, no jacket necessary, another hour a cold front comes through. These are kids that are in school, in a building, with no knowledge of what the temperature is outside. I do agree, the kids probably need a reminder to grab their jacket. Who is to judge, a tiny little girl might get cold while a bunch of little boys are involved in a football game, running and playing. Our bodies are all different, some warm/hot blooded while others are cold. Please just do what is best for the kids. If they need to go get a jacket, let them. Sounds like supervisors need to be a little more understanding. As many paras as there are, some could stay on the playground while others "stand guard" in the hallway while they grab a jacket.

    -- Posted by mrbj on Thu, Nov 4, 2010, at 6:19 PM
  • We are not trying to cause problems on here. I am glad Stephen posted what he did. I agree 100%

    I think why it has not been a problem is because the parents weren't aware of the rule! I have spent time with my children at school, but I haven't gone to recess with them when the weather was changing and was not aware of this. All of the parents I have talked to were not aware of this either. Theresa is trying to help the problem not cause a stir!

    We are trying to find a solution that works for everyone. The people that are not posting names are hiding for a reason as others have said.

    If I wanted drama I would not go to the newspaper, its on facebook everyday!!

    And right after the Your Comments: it says "Please be respectful of others and try to stay on topic." I don't think some of these people are doing either of those!

    -- Posted by Sarah Kinne on Thu, Nov 4, 2010, at 6:24 PM
  • Really this is simply a battle of opinions. The main concern is to be sure that children are not truly being put in peril to learn a lesson. Or as someone posted earlier, perhaps this has nothing to do with learning a lesson but rather a security issue regarding the safety of our children. On this side of the state and in the heartland of America we have the luxury of feeling safe, specifically in Southwest Nebraska, and rightfully so, but keep in mind that neither State NOR Federal regulations are written with little ole' McCook in mind. Before anyone jumps the starting line and leads out with accusational statements (such things are rarely productive as we can see from varied comments in this posting) an honestly unbiased task of research is in order. Our teachers, school administrators, and School Board Members may be bound by State and or Federal regulations which were designed around keeping students in Omaha or New York City, safe and by extension seem overly harsh by Southwest Nebraska's standards.

    I do have to say that comments like: "They are responsible for my children when they are at school. That is the law. Now they will be arrested. See you soon!" sounds a bit threatening if not teetering on terroristic. Sure this is a HOT TOPIC as there seems to be both sides of the fence represented here. Those which wish to make sure their children are not being mistreated, vs. those which choose the path of letting their children learn from experience. As a parent of seven I know a lot of parents in this area and I'm not speaking for everyone but I can tell you this.... those which want their children to learn from experience do NOT want to see their children get hurt. It's the parents that looked at the heading of this Opinion Article, and passed it by with no interest that are the ones to worry about as they don't seem to want to deal with a very important subject..... OUR KIDS.

    Those that say "Learn by doing." are most likely the ones that take their children to the Dr. for their required shots and walk out with tears in their eyes. It doesn't make them sadistic or uncaring; they simply want their children to become responsible adults. You must admit that learning responsibility for your actions (at school, at home, at a summer job) while you are young is better that learning from your mistakes later when the consequences are much worse. Will standing out in 50 degree weather without a coat in 3rd grade keep them from charging an SUV on a 19.5% APR credit card when they graduate from college? THAT depends on the individual; my household of children have one of 3 different personalities therefore each has to be handled in the fashion that best suits their own style.

    I see one thing everyone that has commented on this post has in common; THEY LOVE THEIR CHILDREN, after all, they didn't just pass the article by. Barring the traditional caustic comments that come from the anonymity of "Hiding behind screen names" in these posting sessions, I tip my hat to each of you for being committed to your children.

    God bless you and your families!

    -- Posted by PensiveObserver on Fri, Nov 5, 2010, at 12:08 AM
  • Point taken P.O., I do have to argue one fact though. I don't believe that EVERYONE that has posted a comment on this subject is concerned about kids. Eddy, I think you just like to stir the pot and frankly you just don't make much since at all. There are people on this page that have a true conviction for what they believe is right and you go off touting Socialism comments. Oddly you do that on every subject that you get into, regardless the subject matter. Go back to Mike Hendrick's Blog where your comments fit in with most of the babble that goes on over there. (no offence to Mikes Blog or those that post on it, it's just that there is a lot of political verbiage used over there that doesn't really mean a lot in the end). It's just that you really are not adding serious commentary so much as distracting from the point.

    I will hand it to you though, you have a knack of somehow getting supporters of two different thoughts BOTH fired up in a single, 2 or 3 sentence comment.

    You put quotes around a portion of your last statement: " Its not our job to teach your child". Did you really get that from somewhere? Who are you quoting?

    -- Posted by Nick Mercy on Fri, Nov 5, 2010, at 12:30 AM
  • After dropping my children off at the elementary school I would have to say that most of the parents don't know how to dress.

    -- Posted by ddt4mccook on Fri, Nov 5, 2010, at 8:55 AM
  • Nice point out ddt4mccook, there's a lot of kids that are still showing up at elementary school with shorts and t-shirts. Who's fault is this? The teachers for not making them go back home and dress appropriately? There's got to be a common ground and simple solution. Parents need to be more proactive in dressing and teaching their children right from wrong and the teacher just needs to make a simple reminder before heading outdoor.

    -- Posted by Rural Citizen on Fri, Nov 5, 2010, at 9:38 AM
  • In my OPINION, this has been totally blown out of proportion. How does something as simple as a parent saying "If it is cold enough that the people supervising are wearing their coats, please make sure my 7-8 year old child is wearing his or hers. If my child doesn't, then don't let him or her go out to play."

    Is it too much to ask a teacher to simply say "Johnny/Jane, it is cold out. If you do not wear your coat, you cannot go out to play. It's your choice." Do we not have one single para that can stay in a designated indoor area so that the children can learn their lesson that way? A couple of times of not being able to play will be much more effective, in my OPINION.

    It is my OPINION that a second grader will probably NOT have a life changing moment on the playground nor will the clouds part nor will the secrets of success, maturity, wisdom and life skills be suddenly bestowed upon them because they were not allowed to go in for their coats.

    It is also my OPINION that the little girl who said "I didn't know it was this cold" did not have a revelation that will be recalled with deep reverence for the rest of her life.

    Seriously people. Just go to the board meeting and express your opinion instead of coninuing this absurd waste of time and energy. And again, I sincerely hope none of you are wasting school time and tax payer supported wages posting here. I know I for one have said what I needed to say. I am done.

    -- Posted by STEPHEN FURTADO on Fri, Nov 5, 2010, at 12:17 PM
  • I find it very disturbing that there is an out cry from some of these parents because their child forgot their coat yet most of these people have never been to a school board meeting or better yet did not even know when they happen, why are you not at the school board meeting helping them with school policy or finding new teachers or doing fundraisers to help with the serious lack of funding. I am outraged that you can seriously think that this issue is something the school board really cares about. I personally have several children in the public school system and would love to have some of these parents advocating for better education for our children not being a pain to the people who trying to give our children a better education. As I read through most of the post and have talked to many people in the community I have found that most people think this is funny for lack of a better word this "rule" as you call it has been in place for some time and has more to do with security of the children then it does "to teach them a lesson" and if you don't want your child to have the best security and to be safe at school like some of the others have posted on here it may be better for you to send your child to a different school district or to home school them. I as well as many other people have talked to Mrs Bambaugh we fully support her decision and will be at the school board meeting to support her choice as an administrator and the school board. I also agree with some of the other post that talk about a gentle reminder to the kids should be enough, as of now the principal in my mind has solved the problem by making everyone wear their coats now so I don't see why this needs to be discussed any farther, you got what you wanted your child will now never be cold after lunch again because he or she now has to wear their coat and I know you are mad because they can't go back in to the school to get their coat, but because now they have to wear it there is no need to go back in to the school and get it.

    -- Posted by schoolmom on Fri, Nov 5, 2010, at 1:22 PM
  • WOW! This thing has been discussed to death huh!

    It has gotten to the point that almost every opinion has been stated, restated then reinforced by someone else's opinion.

    I'm glad that the issue has been resolved in such a way that the children won't be left the option to be cold as a consequence of forgetting their coats.

    I am a bit put out by the fact that these teachers are being accused of inadequacy however as I don't truly think the chain of command from which this rule originated from has been determined. I doubt the teachers developed this, the administration?, the school board?, the state?, the Federal Government? Who has that answer? If you are condemning the teachers without knowing the facts then how can you expect to be taken seriously?

    STEPHEN FURTADO: I know that what you said was only Your "OPINION" but I disagree. I learned valuable lessons in 2nd grade... heck I'll even go out on a limb and say I learned valuable lesson when I was but a single year old.... like forks are sharp and if I play with them they can hurt me. Maybe I'm the only one that learned things as I was growing up. Bottom line:

    You can take as much as you want to from experiences. If you choose to see nick from shaving as nothing more than an act of fate, OK, but if you choose to NOT just live in a zombie like state but rather take something away with you from an experience either good or bad, then you might just figure out that you run the razor up and down rather than side to side and avoid those nicks that fate keeps dealing you every time you clean up. Children learn the most before they reach the age of 5... I'm pretty sure they pick up on things that affect the rest of their lives.

    THEN AGAIN: It might just be me and my children that take advantage of everyday's learning experiences.

    That's just an OPINION by the way.

    -- Posted by Nick Mercy on Fri, Nov 5, 2010, at 2:02 PM
  • UPDATE~UPDATE~UPDATE~UPDATE~UPDATE~UPDATE~UPDATE~

    In case it was not clear this is an update~

    I, and Sarah Kinne, had a meeting with Mrs. Baumbach this morning. We discussed an option that will hopefully put an end to the problem at hand. We are going to be working on putting hooks up on the buildings that will allow the children to hang their coats when they are at recess/lunch. This solution, coupled with Mrs. Baumbach's solution to make it mandatory to take your coat out with you, should end all of the problems and concerns. Sarah, and I are going to be doing some sort of fund raiser to raise the money for this project, as not to burden the already serious lack of funding. A new opinion thread, and hopefully an actual article will be placed when more information is received regarding these new hooks.

    I would like to thank everyone for their opinions, (for or against) this issue. I am not superwoman, I cannot fix every issue that the school board may be dealing with. I suggest to some of you that are savvy enough to point out all the other problems our schools are facing, that may be of more importance to you, to maybe be more pro-active about them as well. It is easy to "have a problem", with no solution and talk about it...but a whole different problem when you can't cash the checks that your mouth may sometimes write. I am just one person, that had one problem, and am grateful enough to have good friends to help me find a solution to fix it.

    I have never once bashed or downgraded any teacher, staff, para, or parent. In fact this whole thing started off as something completely different then where it ended up. This was never meant to be a "responsibility" issue, where fingers were pointed to blame the children. This was merely to inform parents of a rule that has been in place for a long time, that I myself did not have any idea about. Again, the day I visited the school, my heart was hurt to see the children in the cold. That is what decided for me that I felt strongly enough about this issue to try and do something about it.

    Thanks again,

    Theresa Steinbeck

    -- Posted by Theresa Steinbeck on Fri, Nov 5, 2010, at 2:29 PM
  • Good work Theresa! Like you said, it's easy to identify a problem, those that put forth an effort to solve the problems are certainly a manority.

    -- Posted by Nick Mercy on Fri, Nov 5, 2010, at 3:51 PM
  • Man... I meant to write "minority". Education is important folks; I guess I should have worked harder in the SPELLING aspect of class. :-)

    -- Posted by Nick Mercy on Fri, Nov 5, 2010, at 4:01 PM
  • Awesome... how do I contribute financially?

    -- Posted by STEPHEN FURTADO on Fri, Nov 5, 2010, at 4:16 PM
  • daisyflower~

    Ok, so let me get this straight...This has again been made an issue about taking "responsibility" for their own actions right? How is it a "responsibility" issue when the children WERE NOT informed of the weather outside, and WERE NOT informed to take their coats. We should point our fingers at them, blaming them for being cold and having the "responsibility" to actually ask to get their coats?

    I have been calm since this whole issue was brought up. I have taken the initiative to offer a solution to this "responsibility" issue. Of course to some there is going to be problems with the solution....So what I purpose is this...those parents that do not want their child taking advantage of the hooks, teach your children the "responsibility" of NOT using the hooks. Teach them that they are to keep their jacket on them at all times, regardless of the weather. That way their child's coat is not lost, misplaced, or stolen. I will then teach my child the "responsibility" of making sure that he has the correct jacket in hand while exiting the playground, by checking it twice, and/or reading his name on the label of it. Also, to not take valuable things to school in his jacket that may end up stolen.

    The head lice issue...Head lice cannot jump. My kid has the same chance of catching head lice from sitting next to a classmate, that he does by hanging a coat next to theirs five inches away. Of course this is simply my opinion, and have no letters next to my name to back that fact up, just the mighty world of Google.

    I was always taught that if you were not part of the cure, then you are a part of the problem. I think that Sarah Kinne, Mrs. Baumbach, and myself have came up with a great solution. Not only will it better the school, but it will also allow for the children to play comfortably without the hassle of lugging a coat around on a warm day.

    Theresa Steinbeck

    -- Posted by Theresa Steinbeck on Sun, Nov 7, 2010, at 11:49 PM
  • hahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha

    -- Posted by jilly on Mon, Nov 8, 2010, at 12:16 AM
  • Like I mentioned before, it's amazing how hundreds of other children have gone to school in the McCook Elementary School system and have survived.

    -- Posted by Rural Citizen on Mon, Nov 8, 2010, at 8:31 AM
  • Rural Citizen~

    Let's get real...I am not saying that freezing for 20-30 minutes is a matter of life or death. How about we stop being melodramatic about it.

    -- Posted by Theresa Steinbeck on Mon, Nov 8, 2010, at 9:44 AM
  • The hook thing is a low cost solution to the issue. It allows children to take their coats out without the fear of being too warm or bogged down. IF someone is concerned about lice, then instuct your child to not hang it up. That way options aren't removed from the others. Better yet, if your child DOES have lice, get it under control so it doesnt get passed on.

    While we are on the "What If's" though, the bigger worry is what if an airliner happens to crash in the playground? Now THAT'S a problem! Maybe that's just a stupid comment because there are unsafe things surrounding us and our children daily. If the no more freezing, no more sweating, and no more lice issues are addressed and solved then someone else will come up with another "what if".

    If someone has a solution to a problem, thank goodness. If another issue arises, solve it! You can't quit living for fear of dying.

    As always.... eddy, thank you for saying absolutly...... something?

    Whatever that might be.

    -- Posted by Nick Mercy on Mon, Nov 8, 2010, at 7:30 PM
  • I have to agree about the concern for head lice. Correct me if I'm wrong, but that was the intent of each child having their own locker inside was to prevent coats residing together to prevent further spread of lice. While they can not jump, close contact with another article of personal clothing, ie coats, they can crawl and be transmitted that way.

    And the whole responsibility issue is just that, responsibility. No matter if you are teaching your child to take their coat to recess, not hang their coat on the hooks, not rummaging through other things, and taking the right coat after recess. It's called responsibility. We should not expect the teachers and para educators to be in complete charge of teaching them responsibility. That is left to us as parents. While at school those teachers and paras reinforce lessons we parents teach at home. They have a much bigger job of teaching them reading, writing and arithmatic.

    From your letters Ms. Steinbeck, you look to be very concerned about this issue as is your right to be. However, it does seem that you are becoming more aggitated over this issue. While I think your heart is in the right place in finding a plausible solution in raising money for those hooks, I will encourage my daughter to not put her coat there. My opinion is that I don't feel it is the best solution to a problem that really wasn't to begin with.

    -- Posted by susanne_1989 on Mon, Nov 8, 2010, at 8:43 PM
  • OMG Susanne you are kidding right?????

    -- Posted by remington81 on Mon, Nov 8, 2010, at 9:46 PM
  • Kidding about what? I am not about any of it.

    -- Posted by susanne_1989 on Mon, Nov 8, 2010, at 9:53 PM
  • "What If's" though, the bigger worry is what if an airliner happens to crash in the playground? Now THAT'S a problem!"

    I love it...I am sitting in my chair laughing out loud as I type...my newest problem will be explaining to my wife why I am laughing so loudly...Thank you for this! You have made my day, and I will now smile several times today thinking about this statement...

    I enjoy knowing there are others out there that share my thought process...lolololol

    -- Posted by cplcac on Tue, Nov 9, 2010, at 3:21 AM
  • Susanne_99~

    I respect your decision to teach your child the responsibility of not using the hooks.

    Please do not mistake my concern about this subject as agitation. I have never once stated that I expect the teachers and/or para educators to be in charge of teaching my child responsibility. In fact I stated just the opposite. Almost exactly what you stated "That is left to us as parents. While at school those teachers and paras reinforce lessons we parents teach at home".

    I feel as a mother, I have taught my child to have the responsibility to remedy any uncomfortable situation he may find himself in. In this situation it was being cold. He had the responsibility to ask to get his coat, (along with many other children). Now, the fact that he was told "no", that is the true issue at hand.

    The fact of the matter is, a child being left in the cold to "learn a lesson", IS NOT the responsibility of teachers and/or paras, to teach MY child. I believe that again, is also the same thing you stated as well.

    Of course everyone will have varying opinions on these sorts of issues. So, though I appreciate your opinion, mine is however different than yours.

    I don't know the key to success, but the key to failure is trying to please everybody. ~Bill Cosby

    -- Posted by Theresa Steinbeck on Tue, Nov 9, 2010, at 7:59 AM
  • Theresa, I really don't think the true issue was ever to make the kids "learn a lesson." Rather, I think the issue was one of maintaining child safety; keeping them with the adults entrusted to their care at the time rather than sending them into the school unsupervised during a time when many other adults are either out to lunch or away from their rooms.

    -- Posted by Think.About.It. on Tue, Nov 9, 2010, at 11:00 AM
  • Think.About.It.~

    Though you make a valid point, I am simply just repeating what was stated to me during the phone conversation with the management of the school. It was told to me that "kids will not die in the short amount of time of being cold, but what they will do is learn the lesson of not forgetting their coat again". Again, that is what I think started the whole responsibility finger pointing. But as I also stated previously, it was not a matter of forgetting his/her coat, it was simply that they were uninformed of the weather at that time.

    Now, I am definitely not arguing the reasons behind the "no going back inside the school rule"! I do understand that there are rules in place for many reasons. I was just arguing that the children needed some way to remedy the being cold issue. To which I think that Sarah Kinne, Mrs. Baumbach, and myself have worked together to find a common ground, and solution for the issue. :)

    -- Posted by Theresa Steinbeck on Tue, Nov 9, 2010, at 1:57 PM
  • WELL SAID Think.About.It!!!!!!

    -- Posted by susanne_1989 on Tue, Nov 9, 2010, at 5:10 PM
  • Only in McCook would something so small be made into something so big. Remember this: One simple man built the Ark, a whole "group" built the Titanic!!

    -- Posted by mommily on Thu, Nov 11, 2010, at 8:19 PM
  • Yes I agreee..... as with Noah, keep God in our schools. Good point mommily.

    -- Posted by Nick Mercy on Fri, Nov 12, 2010, at 1:28 AM
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