have been reached in the "political correctness and, while we are at it, let us guard our children against all possible harm" stakes. Children may no longer hug one another. It sets a bad example for younger children.
Reading this first caused me to check the date. No, it is not April 1st. I then re-checked the location. Yes, we are talking about Australia. To be even more precise we are talking about South Australia and, most precisely of all, a primary school I once attended.
I have many memories of that school, both good and bad. One of the bad memories is of being ridiculed by a teacher for not being able to do something - and then losing marks for the team I was on because I could not do it. One of the good memories is of being hugged by one of the other kids because the kids decided that the teacher's behaviour was not acceptable. That hug was the difference between being able to go on with the school day and perhaps deciding that I would get on my tricycle and disappear forever.
When I first started teaching I worked in a school for profoundly and severely disabled children. We hugged the kids all the time. We hugged them to tell them they had done well. We hugged them to comfort them. We hugged them to help them feel secure. We hugged them to say "hello" and "goodbye". Hugs were part of the day. We could not have taught them anything without hugs. I don't know how they cope now. Teachers are never supposed to hug kids. I know it has all come about because a very small minority of truly evil people decided that simple hugs were not enough but it distresses me. Hugs are essential to life.