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News-Sentinel.com Your Town. Your Voice.
Opening Arguments

Resistance is futile

You will be assimilated into the hive mind:

Educational psychologist Gaynor Sbuttoni said the policy has been used at schools in Kingston, South West London, and Surrey.

She added: “I have noticed that teachers tell children they shouldn’t have a best friend and that everyone should play together.

“They are doing it because they want to save the child the pain of splitting up from their best friend. But it is natural for some children to want a best friend. If they break up, they have to feel the pain because they’re learning to deal with it.”

Russell Hobby, of the National Association of Head Teachers, confirmed some schools were adopting best-friend bans.

He said: “I don’t think it is widespread but it is clearly happening. It seems bizarre.

The blogger who posted about this commented that "bizarre" is putting it mildly. I guess I'd add "sadly delusional" as a reaction. If you try to keep kids away from everything that could cause them pain, you might as well lock them in the basement. And why in the world wouild you want to? Life has pain, and if you don't learn how to cope with it, your adulthood will be an agonizing mess of compounded miseries. And no best friend? What a joyless, wasted childhood that is begging for.

I know, I know, these are just people out on the fringe of that insane self-esteem movement, and I shouldn't make too much of it. But affirming the importance of the individual and hitting back at collectivist impulses is a full-time job that I reslish.