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Elementary school bans 'tag' after students 'were getting too rough' on playground

The game of "Tag" was banned at a California elementary school after some students "were getting too rough." (Image source: YouTube screen cap)

"Tag" — perhaps the oldest childhood game around — has been banned at a California elementary school.

But that's not the only playground casualty at Gold Ridge Elementary in Folsom.

It appears that physical contact in general is now prohibited in the schoolyard since staffers became concerned that some fourth- and fifth-graders were getting too rough during recess — pushing, altercations and injuries, the Sacramento Bee reported, citing a Folsom Cordova Unified School District statement.

“I don’t really like it,” fourth-grader Mallory Giddens told KOVR-TV. “I mean, I don’t really play tag, but I don’t think it’s fair to everyone else that plays tag!"

Image source: KOVR-TV video screen cap

But she said to the station that sometimes other kids "touch too hard" and "push people over."

Principal David Frankel notified four parents last week that their children were warned for not playing nice, the Bee reported.

“Today, we implemented new procedures at school aimed at reducing physical contact and related problem behaviors,” Frankel’s note to parents read, according to the paper. “Student(s) were instructed that physical contact, including tag games, touch football, etc., were not allowed in the yard.”

Sam Hammer, who has two children at Gold Ridge, told KOVR he doesn't agree with the decision.

"It’s something we all did as kids, and I've never seen any harm come from it," he said.

Image source: KOVR-TV video screen cap

District spokesman Daniel Thigpen told the station that "kids were getting too rough ... so the school told them to stop playing those games. … It’s not uncommon for a school to enact specific recess rules to address specific behavior problems.”

Mother of four, Katie Esteves told KOVR she doesn’t worry about her kids playing tag but understands the principal wants to keep things safe.

“It’s really up to him what he probably feels is best for his school,” she told to the station. “As long as it’s being monitored and people are being safe, then I feel it’s OK.”

The Bee reported that the principal’s email to the four parents noted three stages of discipline: First, there's a warning and walk with yard supervisors; then there's a referral to the principal’s office and removal from yard for a day and then a parent-teacher-principal disciplinary conference.

The new rule is not districtwide, the paper said.

(H/T: EAGNews)

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