Students Banned From Sharing News of College Acceptance (Seriously)

graduation capsFor many high school students, the culmination of all of their years of hard work (or less than stellar effort) comes in the form of a letter from the colleges of their choice. A thin one sinks hearts, and a fat one has them shrieking to the world that they actually did it. Only if you're a student in New York, there's no shrieking allowed. In fact, students in some prep schools there are flat out banned from even announcing that they got into any college in person or via social media like Facebook. They're also not allowed to wear t-shirts or other gear on which their new school's name or logo is displayed.

Why? Because it might hurt the other students' feelings. I kid you not. The New York Post cites several examples of schools with such policies designed to minimize the pain for students who don't get into the college of their dreams.

I can't imagine a more ridiculous, over-the-top example of the coddling and kid gloves with which kids today are too often treated.


Sarah Tarrant, director of college counseling at Calhoun School, told the paper that students have weekly classes in which they learn “the appropriate way to share news of acceptance. “The weekly conversation reins in kids who might run around yelling, ‘I got in! I got in!’ ” she said.

It's even happening in public schools there.  Darby McHugh, college coordinator at Bronx HS of Science, told the paper:

It can be bad and it can get weird. We send a notice out to all faculty telling them, ‘Please don’t congratulate students in public, no high fives, no hugging, and please be sensitive so that if you see someone crying, you refer them to the college-adviser office immediately.

I'm truly floored and appalled. Students should go around shouting "I got in!" It's what they've worked so hard for all of these years, and they deserve some kudos. If someone else didn't, well, perhaps they should have studied more. Hard work should be rewarded, and no one should have to be afraid to tout their accomplishments out of fear over hurting someone's precious ego.
It's insulting to everyone involved, and it's no way to prepare students for the 'real' world in which they will be passed over for promotions, lose out on jobs, and not always get a bonus as big as their coworkers. That's life. Hopefully, they use those defeats to inspire them to work harder, and push themselves further. If not, then they have no one to blame but themselves. What's next, athletes not being able to announce their victories? Science fairs to ban the display of winning ribbons?

Competition is good for kids, and it's key to a productive society. For schools to mandate which accomplishments students can share and how is beyond overzealous, and seems like on a complete encroachment on freedom of speech.

Do you think this policy limiting students' ability to proclaim their acceptance to college is outrageous?
Image via shiladsen/Flickr
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