This just in, fromÂ news.com.au: zkhdrnzetd
AnÂ explanation for the clapping ban we were discussing today on the post before this one. Turns out —
A SYDNEY primary school imposed a clapping ban on its students in favour of â€œsilent cheersâ€ because one of its teachers wears hearing aids and found the noise of applause too loud, the NSW Government has said.
The admission by Education Minister Adrian Piccoli came after news.com.auâ€™s storyabout Elanora Heights Public Schoolâ€™s ban on clapping announced in a school newsletter.
The latest edition of the northern beaches schoolâ€™s newsletter advised parents that â€œsilent cheeringâ€, â€œpulling excited facesâ€ and â€œpunching the airâ€ had replaced clapping to respect â€œmembers of our school community who are sensitive to noiseâ€.
Mr Piccoli took to radio on Wednesday evening to defend the ban, saying â€œthe school is supporting a teacher with a disability. The teacher has asked for instances where there is cause for applause, for this not to be done loudlyâ€.
Overnight, Elanora Heights school has removed the July 18, â€œTerm 3 Week 1â€ edition containing the item about the clapping ban from the schoolâ€™s website. [Read the restÂ here.]
A dear relative of mine wears a hearing aid and I see her grimace when sheâ€™s suddenly accosted by a loud sound. And I like the idea of kids being sensitive to the needs of others. That being said, I do still have to wonder whether it makes sense to squelch a normal, exuberant part of childhood â€” part of adulthood, too â€” Â when the apparently solitary person affected by it could presumably leave the room.
This is really an issue I wonder about: Is it insensitive to ask a hyper-sensitive person to either make accommodations or absent themselves?
I donâ€™t want to be a jerk. I donâ€™t want to be a mom insisting that my kidâ€™s right to XYZ trumps your kidâ€™s serious condition. Â I just do wonder when it makes sense for the group to accommodate the individual and when it makes sense for the individual to accommodate the group. â€“ L
I am finding it hard to believe that here it is 2016 and this unfortunate teacher cannot procure a clipped volume hearing aid.
Even in Australia.
Seems like we’re always accommodating someone. Now I get giving a little help so others can manage but there have got to be times when they try to manage on their own. And this seems like one of them to me.
I have a similar issue, though I am functionally quite the opposite. I don’t have hearing aids. I have earplugs. I have to wear them at school, the theater, family gatherings and even the grocery store because I am sound-sensitive from chronic migraines. I feel the teacher’s pain. I think it is very kind of the administration to teach the kids about other ways to do things to be inclusive. At the same time, I would never have asked for an accommodation if this size. It’s something I just live with or leave. There is always going to be some ear-splitting noise for me – fire drills, excited chatter in the halls at the end of the day, noisy cars passing by with the radio cranked up as I drive home, incessantly beeping cash registers, the list goes on forever. Sometines you just gotta choose how to handle it on your own.
I am torn too. I imagine that the students are on board– I’ve taught school, and kids are always more than happy to make accommodations for kids or teachers. It makes them feel helpful and adult and sensitive. Plus, the novelty of air-punching and making faces would be exciting and fun. But certainly, if the teacher in question actually requested this, it’s an awfully big ask.
This seems totally ridiculous to me. I have a dear friend who suffered a head injury. As a result his hearing is incredibly sensitive. He wears ear protection whenever he is in public. He knows he has to take responsibility for protecting himself.
Hindering a child’s exuberant expression, especially at a sporting event, is a bad idea. This teacher needs to find ear protection. This is a great example of entitled narcissism.
I almost replied earlier. My daughter had a friend who HATED singing. Photos of him in kinder show him curled up on the rug with his hands over his ears while the class sang the ABC song. So yeah, I get this. But…for him, I would recommend earplugs or coverings. Or, as most schools now have technology, if an assembly, why not watch from another room with a live feed?
Well said. Now, I wonder if the same thought can be applied to vaccination issue: compelling hundreds of millions of healthy people to a medical procedure with side effects that include brain damage, paralysis, and death all so a few people don’t come down with a mild or rare disease (if you believe in the efficacy of vaccines given that half of all medical science published is admittedly false http://www.thelancet.com/pdfs/journals/lancet/PIIS0140-6736%2815%2960696-1.pdf).
I think it’s amazing that the school is doing this. The children are learning to be empathetic and inclusive, and children can be very exuberant without clapping. In the deaf community people don’t clap, because they can’t hear it, they do a jazz hands type of thing as a visual representation of their appreciation.
I wear hearing aids, and I hate noise. It’s a contradiction. I wear them to hear people talk, but I can’t stand all the extra background noise. I take them out in very loud situations. No problem. At football games, parties for kids, anything with large bursts of noise I either leave them at home or just take them out for a bit and put them back in when I am pretty sure the noise level is down. I have 6 loud rowdy kids, and the best part of my day is taking out my hearing aids in the evening. My whole word gets quieter and more peaceful.
I almost think this is worse. I feel like an adult should have figured out by now how to handle her disability out in the world (where there are definitely loud sounds, many of them unexpected), rather than expecting the world to handle it for her. Of course kids need to learn when to use their “inside voices”, but on the other hand they now have the added worry that just being a kid is going to negatively impact their teacher.
I’m color-blind. I demand that the entire world be re-colored to match only what I can distinguish.
I’ve found headphones with noise cancelling technology, though expensive, surprisingly effective for most situations. Even so, why do so many social events feel like they are somehow mandatory? Much too late in life I’ve become comfortable with frequently saying things like “I’m not feeling too well just now – perhaps I’ll just go study quietly in the library if that’s okay with you.”
In a case like this, my thought is it’s on the disabled individual to find a way to deal with it his or herself. It’s not reasonable, rational or fair IMO to expect hundreds (maybe thousands, depending on how big the school is) to change a normal, natural behavior that nobody else has a problem with in order to accomodate you.
The solution of the teacher leaving the room may not be viable in this situation — she may well need to be present to supervise the kids from her own classroom during these events.
That said, surely another means can be found.
That’s a whole lot of tin foil on that site and I don’t think it proves your point. Could you explain something for me? How do vaccines actually work?
(Sorry for the threadjack, but I’m so sick of people spreading dangerous misconceptions based on junk science)
I tend to lean liberal on many things. One thing I dislike in the ideology though, is the idea that the majority must bend over backwards for the minority.
40 years ago my great grandfather had a hearing aid. When we were at their house, he simply turned it down because the noise bothered him. My great grandmother liked the current popular music at the time. When she listened to it, he turned his hearing aid down. When he came to our school presentations, he would turn his hearing aid down. The point here is that he had a disability that he took responsibility for. He never asked others to accommodate him. He realized that his hearing loss was his problem, not everybody else’s.
Granted I don’t know much about today’s hearing aid technology, but if he had one with adjustable volume 40 years ago, surely those are available today. (If, by chance, I’m wrong about the adjustable volume being available 40 years ago, then he must have been taking the hearing aid out, so the lesson here is the same)
I’m not saying that we should never make accommodations for people, but this mentality we have these days where if one person doesn’t like something we are all expected to change the way we act or do things to accommodate them is ridiculous.
It makes sense for a small group to accommodate an individual. It makes sense for an individual to accommodate a larger group.
A school, I would suggest, is a “large group.” A workplace team is a small group.
When we have a group lunch cook-out, I make sure to not put bacon in the hamburgers, because I know I have some coworkers who don’t consume pork. I would not expect a catered event to take my culinary requirements into account.
There are simple social cues that we use to determine these things. Most of us (i.e. those not on the autism spectrum) can figure these out under the heading “don’t be a jerk.” We quickly determine which people in our social circles qualify for that label.
“There is always going to be some ear-splitting noise for me â€“ fire drills….”
Somewhat off topic, but related. Every downtown office building I’ve worked in in Chicago (a grand total of three) has had a visual-voice fire alarm system -a flash of light about every two seconds along with a beep for the visually impaired, and then security comes on over the intercom to instruct people what to do (it’s rare that a high-rise office building is fully evacuated, so it’s usually a matter of moving down a few floors). To me this makes so much sense on so many levels. A clanging alarm is not only overwhelming for people with noise sensitivity, it doesn’t tell you what to do. It’s an unnecessary stressor that activates the stress response part of the brain, whereas the visual-voice system activates the executive functions of the brain. I do worry about people with epilepsy but I’ve been told that the visual flashes are modulated not to trigger seizures. I don’t see why this system can’t be more widely used, especially in schools these days – it’s better for everyone, not just people with disabilities/sensitivities. This is the kind of improvement we can make when we take people’s disabilities and sensitivities seriously.
” I would not expect a catered event to take my culinary requirements into account.”
Really? Because expecting caterers to understand different culinary requirements, whether religious, medical or whatever, is the norm these days. And for what you pay for catering, it should be.
“I almost think this is worse. I feel like an adult should have figured out by now how to handle her disability out in the world (where there are definitely loud sounds, many of them unexpected), rather than expecting the world to handle it for her.”
You know what noise I absolutely despise that makes me sick to my stomach (or lose my appetite)?
When someone is smacking their lips and eating noisily. People I know and love…I can’t even eat near them. Seriously disgusting. And my daughter with braces is a disaster at corn on the cob, so I do a preemptive strike by cutting it off the cob before she eats it so I don’t have to bear witness to her sucking and gross noises.
There are many noises that offend. What next, no FART zones? I can’t control my environment, I can only control how I react to it.
Kids are noisy, boisterous, and bundles of energy. Being around groups of them for too long honestly gives me a headache. I could never be a teacher. God bless you all who teach (and I hope you are enjoying your well deserved break).
I like my quiet too much. I wouldn’t go into a teaching situation expecting all of the students to be quiet on my behalf. What happen to you can prepare your child for the road, not the road for your child?
Dienne — I’d almost rather deal with the bell/buzzer/alarm/clanging than those harsh, sharp blinking lights. We have them in our office building too (both alarms AND lights) and they give me a splitting headache within about 30 seconds. Some have given me a few minutes of vertigo. I have to walk with my hands blocking around my eyes like a horse – especially in the stairwell. But I understand your point completely. There are just some situations, like fire safety systems, where everyone cannot be accommodated.
I think if the students are informed of Ms. Teacher’s situation, they may decide voluntarily to tone it down but I don’t think all clapping should be BANNED. Why do we have to go to such far-reaching extremes?
“Ms. Teacher in X grade has sensitive hearing so maybe considering keeping your applause lower or use these alternatives”. By making it a ban you begin to suck the joy out of whatever it is the kids are celebrating in the first place.
This sort of post is exactly why I no longer follow FRK, but it turned up in my Twitter feed this morning.
The assumption here is that disabled people are less than, and the non-disabled are “accommodating,” catering to, pampering them by including them. Which is flat wrong. Disabled people have a RIGHT to inclusion and access – these are not special privileges that the rest of society can choose to “generously” bestow when they feel like it, or begrudge when they find the needs of the disabled to be silly or not worth their time. “Just leave” is not an acceptable solution to a disability access problem, and in fact, in a public setting such as a federally funded public school, it’s probably illegal under ADA law.
It’s funny because I see Baby Boomers constantly complaining about the “entitled attitudes” of young people today, but what are we teaching children by telling them that their (non existent) “right” to clap and scream is more important the right of a disabled teacher to access school assemblies?
I would love to come back to the FRK community when it’s willing to confront its own ableism and bias against disabled people.
Dienne, perhaps I should clarify. If I go to a caterer and say “I need meals for 50 people for Generic Event” I would not expect a caterer to take all culinary requirements into account. If I’m being fed at the Generic Event I would not expect culinary requirements to be taken into account.
If I go to a caterer and say “I need 50 meals and it’s for a vegetarian group” that’s different.
But as a matter of course, don’t expect people to cater to your needs if they don’t know about your needs. A large group can’t cater to the needs of an individual at the expense of others. A small group can.
Erin, some disabilities don’t have a way to overcome them. It’s hard for someone in a wheelchair to climb stairs. It is not hard, nor unreasonable, to expect someone with a hearing aid to turn it down.
For the record, I don’t complain about the younger generation feeling entitled. It’s a lot more people than that. It’s usually only the younger ones who hear me.
Workshop I seen a lift for a wheelchair so people can go up stairs. There was one in my high school. I don’t know much about how it works because most of my fellow students could walk so I never saw it used.
People who self-righteously throw around words with the “ism” or “ist” suffix (ie: ableism/ableist) make me want to fly into a screaming rage and pull my own hair out. I demand they all stop because I don’t like it! 🙂
Except the thing is, I wouldn’t ever demand somebody stop something just because it bothers me or doesn’t include me. People who are prone to use words with “ism” and “ist” suffixes, however…
Although I guess I should give props to Erin, who doesn’t like FRK’s unabashed “ableism” and has chosen to remove herself from the situation. Well, except for monitoring the group through Twitter so she can pop in and scold others for being ableist and remind us that she’s left the group until we change to agree with her views.
Okay, I take back my previous comment. As someone who comes from a family full of early hearing loss, the teacher should either have her hearing aid reprogrammed to cut out loud bursts of sound, or just turn it down or off during the assemblies. She won’t be missing anything important.
I think we might tend to over applaud, I’ve been to a kids show or school event where I couldn’t hear what was being said due to applause. Honestly I think it’s more than just one person. My son when he was young was overly sensitive to noise, we couldn’t even see a movie unless he wore ear muffs. Sadly I have become aware of the increasing number of Vaccine Injured children many of them have sensitivities to noises, especially sudden & loud ones. Many who are Autistic are sensitive & with 1 in 50 boys being affected it’s not just one person 🙁 and they are not the only ones sensitive. Lucky for us my son out grew his sensitivities. My father & Father in law wear hearing aids & find those noises bothersome too. Maybe limit applause to once at the very end rather than ban it.
I’m Jewish. I think the whole world should keep kosher, so that I can eat at any restaurant I want.
Seriously though, hearing aid technology can be adjusted to clip out the upper ranges of sound. Life is hard, bring your own helmet, because the world is not padded (although at this rate, it may soon be.)
I agree ravana. If loud noises bug her then she should find a way to avoid them. I dislike loud noises but I don’t force others to accommodate me. I am to one who has to manage.
I live with a hearing impaired son and husband. We have the discussion al the time about how the word can bend and so can they. There is no reason why that teacher cannot place her hands over her ears to lessen the volume of the clapping. She may experience some minor feedback, but why should an entire school be affected when she can make a simple adjustment. Is she never going to a concert, sporting event, rally, or party again where there might be cheering? She needs to learn how to function in the real world with her disability.
Would you even be having this discussion if the teacher’s disability were more visible? i.e. If the teacher used crutches or a waking frame would it be squelching their exuberance to ask them to take care in corridors?
“Disabled people have a RIGHT to inclusion and access â€“ these are not special privileges that the rest of society can choose to â€œgenerouslyâ€ bestow when they feel like it, or begrudge when they find the needs of the disabled to be silly or not worth their time.”
I agree that education should be accessible to all children and reasonable accommodations should be made to make it inclusive. The key word is reasonable.
It seems our views of disabilities are being somewhat watered down. That everyone has a right to be accommodated all of the time, and this is entirely unrealistic.
What do you make of this story, Erin?
Does this student have a right to bring a dog that bites his fellow students to monitor blood sugar? Do the rights of the disabled student(diabetes) trump the right of fellow students not to be bitten by a dog in the classroom?
I agree with the comment about over-applauding. I’ve been to several school events (like graduations) where it was asked that applause be held to the end. That’s a solution as well, giving the teacher ample warning that it will be coming so she can make adjustments. There will probably still be unhappy people regardless of the solution, as is the case with this one, but you can’t please everyone all the time.
So because ONE adult teacher has an issue with loud noise, ALL the children have to answer for her disability? Um…that’s a pretty selfish of adults. But again, it’s usually about what’s best for the adults, than what’s best for the children. The good of the many, outweigh the good of the few. In this case, ONE persons wants, does not outweigh the needs of all the children in the school. The school is there, in a larger part, for the kids. Not the teachers. Perhaps, they should install a speaker where volume can be adjusted, in an office or room where that teacher with the issue can sit and not have to worry about loud noise. She doesn’t need to be in the auditorium. It’s not about her, it’s about the kids.
That’s like going to a concert, then being told that everyone has to stop cheering and clapping (keep it quiet), because ONE person finds it too loud for their liking.
Yeah, my first response is they should just take up a collection or whatever to get the teacher a more technologically advanced hearing aid. The technology to filter noises is older than transistors.
I mean, I’m all for reasonable accommodations, but you have to weight the severity of the accommodation, how many people it affects, and what other reasonable accommodations must be made.
IMHO, asking children to be quiet all the time for someone who could probably manage the issue in a way that wouldn’t impact everyone seems like a bad resolution.
For example, I have food intolerances. One makes me massively ill, the others are just unpleasant. All I want when I go out somewhere is one food that doesn’t have any of the one that makes me massively sick for weeks, and has a small-medium amount of the ones that just make me feel kind of bad for a little bit but I can deal with. I don’t require that everything on the menu is ok for me to eat. 😛 I only need one.
“I feel like an adult should have figured out by now how to handle her disability out in the world”
Eh… When I was in university, I had this fantastic teacher (I guess in the American system she’d be an assistent professor or so) who, at all of 52, was slowly losing her hearing to the point that she couldn’t cope without hearing aids anymore. So to her, the whole hearing aid thing was new and she did have to figure it all out NOW.
Now, that was university and we were all adults in small groups so it was easy enough to accommodate her (as in, repeat potentially good answers she hadn’t heard the first time, waiting until she looked at you and then mouth your answer was also funny).
Now, at a primary school the circumstances are different, and if she’d always had this hearing loss I probably would have thought that this wasn’t the smartest career choice, but given the situation I can imagine that the school and the kids don’t want to loose her.
@Lenore: Sister? 🙂
Rant: French Revolution era political theorist Benjamin Constant, considered by many historians to be the founder of modern liberalism, argued the difference between ancient and modern liberty was that in the modern world it was necessary for there to be a right to be left alone. That the problem with the French Revolution was the idea that participation in politics was mandatory, and that everybody had to have an opinion on the controversies of the day. Failure to take a side on any matter opened one’s self to mean-spirited accusations through the informer-system. Failure to participate risked execution. Constant argued people should have the right to conduct their business, religious practices, and family life without being interfered with by mandatory inclusive politics ruling over every little thing. This seems to be to be in at least some harmony with the general philosophy of the FRK. It seems to be much of what has been increasingly lost in society over the last twenty or so years. The internet and social media are accelerating the trend. People start getting the idea of mandatory social participation in school. It needs to stop.
Seriously Rick, What does your anti-vac agenda have to do with the subject of this post?
I think it’s cool that dogs can detect low blood sugar. Who knew?
Dogs are awesome.
I agree with the point of view that everyone should make an effort at sensitivity and accommodation, including the disabled person.
Principal: “We’ve decided to enact a ban on clapping out of sensitivity to your needs.”
Teacher: “Oh no, that is really too much to ask. I can’t allow you to go to all that trouble. I’ll simply .”
that sort of thing
Trust me not to look at the front page before commenting on the previous thread ….too early for being awake on a Saturday â˜º.
Interesting that they are trying to be polite and accommodate the teacher. Me, personally I would prefer to use assembly time to be in the staff room having a drink â˜º….maybe this teacher is pivotal to discipline (the DP or someone? ), and that’s not viable. Possibly, too, assembly noise was getting out of hand and this is a convenient way to get it lowered. Who knows?
I was interested to read on the previous thread that assemblies (pep rallies? ) can be noisy in North America. This seems out of kilter with the general lack of allowing kids to be kids that seems commonplace up there. Why would you allow cheering and clapping when you don’t allow recess? In general the expectation here is for kids to be quiet in assembly and run off steam afterward. There’s no doubt that assembly is getting noisier, but kids should be sitting quietly listening to announcements, watching skits or whatever.
@Rick – stop reading pseudo-science and for goodness sake vaccinate your kids. Foolish people like yourself are forcing the rest of the community to accommodate itself to the non-extinction/return of nasty, preventable diseases, thanks to your silly beliefs. Talk about narcissism – that must be the ultimate in narcissistic behaviour, forcing the human race to carry on with diseases because your precious snowflake self can’t understand science.
Why couldn’t the teacher remove the hearing aid-just before the round of applause.
I have a story for you how about my daughter 8 who went to summer reading and I’m dirvce and he wants me dead told them I wasn’t allowed to drive and claimed I was messed up right but let me take her home and I hear them talk ! So I went back never telling my daughter and dad to let them know school is a safe place and if you think aomething is ever wrong you call police do not release student so know they called my ex who put an order against me bc of what school said but now the she won’t comment at first the alpoloze now I have to go to court to lift it they stay out ! So what you think about that and he sold everything and stole copper from Long Island railroads and walk away paying a lot and I’m the loser and now the school has gave me there lawyer I can’t afford one for me who helps me and my kids I have went everywhere
Re: Rick: When your only tool is “anti-vacc” every problem looks like a pharmaceutical company conspiracy.
The editorial linked doesn’t mention vaccines; it covers a broader term – “scientific publications.” Yes, it turns out that if you use a small sample size, drawing conclusions is not a good plan. That doesn’t mean that “oh, if 50% of published science is wrong, it MUST mean vaccines are dangerous.” Scientists, desperate for prestige, inflate the results of their research. Michael Mann made a name for himself in the global warming arena by outright falsifying data.
Good lord. If 50% of published data was wrong, we’d be missing a handful of planets. It would mean that there’s even odds the earth really is flat.
On the other hand, one’s propensity to identify as an “anti-vaccer” lets the rest of the world know who should not be allowed to have children.
I also think dogs are awesome. My youngest (in elementary) has reading therapy dogs in her classroom several times a week. The children take turns reading to the dogs and it’s the highlight of the day for many of them. She has one classmate who is allergic to dogs but still enjoys them in the classroom, she just doesn’t pet them (and she doesn’t have allergy symptoms with the golden retrievers that visit their class).
But a bitey dog is a different story. I don’t think a dog should be forced on other students if it has a history of biting (even if the student provoked the dog). Yeah, it’s cool the dog can predict low blood sugar but so can other methods.
This seems similar to the peanut bans at many grade schools (why not at middle schools or high schools?) In Los Angeles, it seems trendy that every kid has some kind of allergy that an entire school has to accommodate. I had a one pound baby who had some really difficult issues eating, especially when he was young. Did I ask for accommodations? No! One of the few things he would eat as a kindergartner was peanut butter sandwiches. When we were admitted to this pricey private school, there was no mention of peanuts in the 50 pages of paperwork we filled out. Kindergarten starts & the no peanut ban is brought out because one child in the school supposedly had a peanut allergy. I fought the ban. Eventually, the school just set up a “no peanut table” and everyone was satisfied.
The assumption here is that disabled people are less than…
The way I see it, the assumption here is that disabled people are capable of dealing with the world around them and don’t need to be handled with kid gloves.
I am disgusted by a lot of the comments here. A school has found a way to make life a little easier for someone with a disability and we are criticizing it? Talk about special snowflakes! Do we really think that the school didn’t examine all options before encouraging large groups of people to use an alternative to clapping? I don’t think asking a primary school teacher to leave the hall or turn off their hearing aids is a sensible idea – why should they be excluded? Clapping and making a large amount of noise in a confined environment is not a human right. I’m sure this poor teacher doesn’t go around expecting the world to be silent, but teaching our kids to be kind can only be a good thing. In my value system, kindness trumps clapping. I would be proud to send my children to that school.
Susan, your ‘one child’s need for peanut butter were accommodated over the top of another ‘one child’s need for a peanut free space. I don’t think we have the same understanding of ‘no accommodation’.
I’ll stop commenting after this, I promise.
I’m not sure we have the same idea of an assembly here (I live in Australia). For us, particularly in primary school, assembly is a time when notices are given, awards are given out, and children are expected to use their ‘audience manners’. They generally don’t last for more than 30 minutes. The only time people applaud is when children are getting whatever the awards are called – at our school these are called chapel awards. No one is asking the kids not to make noise in the playground, at a concert, or at a sporting event. Only for that 1/2 hour a week when they are expected to sit quietly anyway. The biggest primary schools in Australia have maybe 900 kids. While I a presently able myself, I have a number of friends with various disabilities, both visible and hidden, so this is a bit of a hot topic for me. Over and out!
I came across something slightly related that I hadn’t seen before. Both my girls (11yo and 13yo) went to a student leadership camp. Most of the time they clapped and cheered for each other (quite vigorously), but a few times the “applause” was snapping of fingers instead.
On the way home they explained to me that had kind of developed for some things – especially if someone shared something very personal and/or deep – clapping had seemed too harsh or the wrong “tone,” so they snapped instead. And it did create a different feel – kind of like a “we hear you and support you” sense…almost like a hug.
Workplace health and safety has taken a similar ridiculous stance as the universities ‘freedom FROM speech trigger warnings. They may be patting themselves on the back for looking after their ’employee with a disability’ but they are actually GIVING this employee a greater disability.
YES! One person has a problem so EVERYONE must change their ways. No, no, it makes no sense at all for that one person to change her behavior, it makes no sense at all for that one person to find a new approach, it makes no sense at all for ONE PERSON to change, it makes plenty of sense to make EVERYONE ELSE change. When did this happen?
Abilities and disabilities are both physical and mental. Narcism is a common mental disability. I know a few people that have developed the ‘poor me’ attitude and has been chanting for 20 years, “I’m a helpless victim”. This person had no physical disability before. However after slumping on the couch for 20 years and doing no exercise, he now has a back problem.
It’s good to teach children empathy. However it’s also bad to teach them that the world revolves around you.
“Do we really think that the school didnâ€™t examine all options before encouraging large groups of people to use an alternative to clapping?”
I have a very, very hard time believing anyone could type that sentence without laughing to themselves about the absolute absurdity of *alternative to clapping*.
Maybe instead everyone gives the single finger salute?
(But at least it’s not CLAPPING.)
“Would you even be having this discussion if the teacherâ€™s disability were more visible? i.e. If the teacher used crutches or a waking frame would it be squelching their exuberance to ask them to take care in corridors?”
Walking carefully through corridors is consistent with behaving normally in corridors. That should be the rule, always, anyway. That’s not really changing anybody’s behavior for the sake of a disability, that’s what should be expected all the time.
Not applauding or cheering audibly is not consistent with behaving normally when there is something to applaud or cheer. And unlike a teacher who can’t move safely through the corridors, this teacher *does* have options for dealing with this, other than relying on everyone else’s behavior.
That’s really the point — not that the person should not be accommodated, but that an accommodation involving changing everyone else’s behavior to that degree is unnecessary. She can be accommodated by assigning her to duties that place her farther away from the source of the noise, provided with ear protection, etc.
I hate loud noise . I cover my ears. It doesn’t stop the noise , but mutes it quite well.
â€œDo we really think that the school didnâ€™t examine all options before encouraging large groups of people to use an alternative to clapping?â€
I for one do think that. It’s often easier just to make a new rule than to come up with a creative solution to a problem that satisfies what’s really at stake without creating all sorts of unintended consequences that we choose not to think about.
Also, given that this can’t be the first teacher in the world who has had this kind of problem, I have to think that in other situations, other solutions have been found. The idea that this is the last possible resort is implausible.
“this canâ€™t be the first teacher in the world who has had this kind of problem, I have to think that in other situations, other solutions have been found. The idea that this is the last possible resort is implausible.”
They considered the possible solutions, decided on the one that they liked, implemented it, and nobody actually affected by the decision seems to be complaining. Now if only all the busybodies would stop second-guessing their decision…
â€œNow if only all the busybodies would stop second-guessing their decisionâ€¦â€
I don’t consider that we are all busybodies. We are very tired of the dramatic rise in narcissism and are disturbed to find the schools are encouraging even more.
“I donâ€™t consider that we are all busybodies.”
Busybodies never think they’re busybodies.
They say :It’s just that I’m concerned about…”
From an American standpoint, this is an ADA issue. The employer must accommodate employees with disabilities. I suspect Australian labor law isn’t far off. Even given that, why can’t the school buy $20 ear protection for the disabled person? I understand that hearing aids and good health insurance can be expensive, but there is a really cheap solution that doesn’t involve preventing children from clapping.
Kids could turn their heads around to yell, just like when they cough.
You are forgetting keywords. “within reason “. And any complete ban is not within reason.
I guess you’re right. Everybody that is opposed to this decision is a busybody
“Everybody that is opposed to this decision is a busybody”
Pretty much, yeah… although I was referring specifically to you.
It isn’t being a busy body when it is something other schools can point to this one as an example to ban clapping and cheering in their school.
My 9 year old asked what I was reading. So I explained that I was reading a story about a school that asked the children not to clap during assemblies because one teacher with a hearing aid was bothered by the noise. She immediately said, “so she should turn her hearing aid down, duh”. I’m not even sure how she knows hearing aids can be turned down! Smart cookie.
I agree that it’s nice to be kind to each other and sensitive to each other’s needs but I hate the idea of the multitude having to change to accommodate a few. Instead of silent clapping the teacher could wear noise softening/canceling headphones during times when the students may be clapping or she could accept that those sounds are loud to everyone and rejoice that she can hear them. The issue is really that the loudness makes her uncomfortable for the 30 seconds it’s going on, maybe she should take a deep breath and wait for it to pass.
After reading through my previous comments and realizing that my pro-clap (not the gonorrhea one, the applause one) viewpoints do indeed make me a busybody, I want to apologize.
I have no business telling others how they should applaud.
But I checked up on the definition of applause:
1. hand clapping as a demonstration of approval, appreciation, acclamation, or the like.
2. any positive expression of appreciation or approval; acclamation.
So air punch on and wriggle silently for alternative definition! Punch your way out of the imaginary box! I bet the membership to the school’s MIme Club skyrockets. While you’re at it, see if you can get the word “fetch” to take off.
We can all learn from a school that bans clapping in favor of alternative methods of applause and perhaps not to be a busybody while we’re at it. Just let this school do it’s own thing. A little more understanding and kindness about basic human reactions of approval and acclamation and this world would be a much better place.
Well, if commenting and sharing one’s opinion in a discussion forum is being a busybody, I guess Lenore might as well remove the comment section from her site. Or James was trying to get a rise out of everyone, like he often does.
â€œIt isnâ€™t being a busy body when it is something other schools can point to this one as an example to ban clapping and cheering in their school.â€
I know that and so do most people on this site. James just needed something to argue about.
There’s just not enough information here to say whether it’s good or bad. What happens if a student forgets the rule, and starts to clap? Is he punished or reprimanded? Is he ignored, because the sound of one kid clapping isn’t a big deal? Does he start clapping, look around and notice the other kids wiggling around, and then starts wiggling around too because that looks like a lot more fun? Was the rule imposed from on high, or did the kids agree to it? Maybe a kid was the one to propose it?
OK, perhaps the teacher could just leave the roomâ€”but maybe the teacher is a beloved member of the community and the kids can’t bear to have her absent. Maybe she doesn’t have enough money to buy better hearing aids.
I have nothing against helping disable folks but I do think that they should manage to do what they can for themselves. Many people disable and not find ways to stand on their own two feet and there is such a thing as overdoing it. And this ban seems like overdoing it. My guess a full ban was the easiest way to solve the problem. No need to think about it just get rid the annoyance completely. I bet some kids don’t like the idea of no clapping but they’re kids who listen to them.
“‘It isnâ€™t being a busy body when it is something other schools can point to this one as an example to ban clapping and cheering in their school.’
I know that and so do most people on this site”
What an AMAZINGLY stupid argument. Why, if another school were to accommodate a person’s disability by changing how they applaud, civilization will fall! Same deal… if none of the people actually affected by the policy object to it, why is it any of your business? If you can point to someone who’s affected by the policy and is complaining about it, you’re picking a side. If you can’t, what are you doing?
Lollipoplover, interesting article on service dogs. I am not an expert on this field, by any means, but I have been researching this for a client because they have been seeing a rise in fake service dogs or dogs that have received a minimal amount of training and are being passed off as legitimate service animals. Some states have even taken steps to go after people that do this.
State laws may vary, but in most places, service animals must be let into places where the public is allowed. That being said, if the animal is disruptive, dangerous, or relieves itself inappropriately, these places can require that the animal be removed.
James, you make an interesting point, but if we limit our discussions to issues that only affect us as individuals, then we wouldn’t really be talking about much. I certainly have no say in what this school does, nor would I even consider making my feelings known to them, but I don’t see the problem with discussing the broader implications of these kinds of policies.
James there are a lot of things are don’t effect us directly but if we ignore them we could be next. We discuss these issues with the hope that if we’re next we can bring back common sense. P.S if you don’t like the topic then why not just ignore us and go do your own thing!
Here in Canada we have no say or authority over how Americans choose their president. Yet we can openly debate just how utterly insane it is to have Trump as a candidate.
That mental health worker that was shot by an idiot cop has absolutely no bearing on us yet we are entitled to our opinions.
As much as I wish I could slap that obnoxious smugness right out of you. …… different topic.
If people were limited to speaking on issues that only affect them it would be awesome. Because idiots like you with no life would be silent.
“James, you make an interesting point, but if we limit our discussions to issues that only affect us as individuals, then we wouldnâ€™t really be talking about much.”
I don’t recall suggesting, much less demanding, and “we limit our discussions to issues that only affect us as individuals”. A tiny amount of cogitation on the subject will reveal that my actions certainly don’t reflect such a belief.
However, let’s draw a parallel.
The Meitiv family made a decision about how things should be run within their family. They implemented this decision, and nobody affected by it is known to have been harmed by it or to even complain about it. This school made a decision about how things should be run within its walls. They implemented this decision, and nobody affected by it is known to have been harmed by it or to even complain about it. Outsiders didn’t approve of the decision, labeling it “wrong” and “unsafe” and “not in the best interests of the children”. (Of course, other people approved of the decision, and another group yet said something like “this isn’t the decision I would have made, but it’s not my place to substitute my judgment for theirs”)
There are two tendencies that people tend to fall into. One is to assume that there are two, and only two, possible choices… you either support or oppose. The second is to suffer partisan-blindness… we object when THEY do something, but can’t even see it when one of US does the same thing. If it’s wrong, it’s wrong when anybody does it.
(For a recent example of the latter, compare the difference in the Republicans’ demand for jail time (even execution!) of Hillary Clinton for maybe possibly exposing classified information via private email server, and the demand for a pardon for Scooter Libby, who took the fall for actually, definitely exposing classified information.)
“James there are a lot of things are donâ€™t effect us directly but if we ignore them we could be next”
OK. How does this apply presently?
I donâ€™t recall suggesting, much less demanding, and â€œwe limit our discussions to issues that only affect us as individualsâ€. A tiny amount of cogitation on the subject will reveal that my actions certainly donâ€™t reflect such a belief.
Except you did. As is typical with your trolling, you do something, and then later deny it. As someone else suggests, if this is a topic that is so bothersome to discuss, you can certainly refrain from telling us how little you care and how ok you are with their decision. Since you don’t have a substantive argument, you have to resort to name calling and insults.
“Except you did.”
“As is typical with your trolling, you do something, and then later deny it. As someone else suggests, if this is a topic that is so bothersome to discuss”
I, um, didn’t say this, either, and again, rather obviously, my actions suggest otherwise.
“Since you donâ€™t have a substantive argument, you have to resort to name calling and insults.”
You seem to be projecting.
Sometimes I think this blog is callous to an extreme.
I am opposed to political correctness and I am opposed to generalized bans. I have absolutely no objection whatsoever to making reasonable accommodations to make life easier for specific people with specific disabilities. That is just basic common courtesy.
For example, I object to schools banning peanut products as a matter of policy. I have had no objection whatsoever with the two times I have gotten emails before a week of summer camp asking that no peanut products be sent due to an allergic child attending camp that specific week.
This is a decision to accommodate a specific teacher with a specific disability. And apparently only during certain times, assemblies, and even then only when prompted. Otherwise kids are free to clap as they wish. My guess is that kids get the silent cheer prompt when they are being too loud, but can clap and cheer when they keep it down to a moderate level. No big deal. No great trauma. The kids affected don’t appear to mind.
Granted, I live in the “live free or die state” so I am sure that I have a different perspective than folks that live in much more populated areas. In school in the 80’s we were taught and endlessly debated the idea that “a person’s rights stop at the nose of the next guy.” This makes sense — why should I demand that someone else’s rights be infringed upon because I want or need to do something? But it seems to me that back then (not so long ago) we were also more civil to each other. I didn’t have a mandated responsibility to help someone with a disability — but my moral code dictated that it was the right thing to do. Rather than mandating accommodations, we tried to be empathetic and helpful. granted, not everyone felt this way — but many people did — without building resentment. There are two sides of every coin. If people expect the right to do what they want, they also need to take responsibility for their own needs. I’m not saying that the American’s with Disabilities Act was unnecessary – some people are jerks or selfish and some companies take chasing profits to the extreme–there needs to be protections. But like everything else, when we legislate everything, everything becomes a crime. And when we make a law that everyone must be accommodated then everyone is inconvenienced. Is this better? I work with a special-ed teacher who is the first to say “Fair does not unilaterally mean equal.”
Lately, I keep thinking that we will soon be like the characters in the movie Wall-E. Each living our own virtual existence but not experiencing reality. Granted, we shouldn’t expect everyone to have to fight for everything — but there is an immense feeling of accomplishment and satisfaction in overcoming obstacles. And, when you give people the chance to be nice and helpful and not self-absorbed — most are more accommodating on their own than they would be if they are forced.
My Dad uses hearing aids, and in places with sudden loud noises. he takes them out. This apparently is Nobel-Prize-level creativity?
I have a similar issue with room temperatures. My mother constantly complains of being cold, to the point where I really wonder if it’s an attention-getting habit. It can be an overheated 74-degree room and rather than get a sweater she’ll turn on a space heater. I respond now by taking off my shirt.
â€œBut it seems to me that back then (not so long ago) we were also more civil to each other. I didnâ€™t have a mandated responsibility to help someone with a disability â€” but my moral code dictated that it was the right thing to do.â€
You’re right. That’s what makes this a catch 22. The rise in narcissism means that being respectful to each other needs to be mandated. However by mandating things like this, we encourage more narcissism.
You seem to be projecting.
Clearly, you understand this as well as you understand the legal system.
“And, when you give people the chance to be nice and helpful and not self-absorbed â€” most are more accommodating on their own than they would be if they are forced.”
Isn’t that exactly what happened here? There is no Australian law against clapping. The local government didn’t hand down a mandate that all children in all schools must stop clapping. Even this school doesn’t have a ban on clapping. What has happened is that this specific school has a teacher who is sensitive to sound and the powers that be at the school decided of their own accord to accommodate her. The students appear to want to be helpful as they aren’t complaining. The parents appear to want to be helpful as they are not complaining. In fact, the only people complaining are people who are completely unaffected by the policy and have simply decided that nobody should ever be accommodated.
“there is an immense feeling of accomplishment and satisfaction in overcoming obstacles.”
And there are obstacles that nothing is to be gained from by forcing ourselves to endure them needlessly if it can be avoided. That is just being a martyr. Earlier this year I broke my ankle – a real pain in the ass for a courtroom attorney who travels from county to county, sometimes going to 3-4 different courthouses in one day. I felt absolutely no need to be a martyr and there was no satisfaction to be garnered from struggling in pain for things that could be done easier. I thought nothing of continuing non-urgent cases for a few weeks so that I didn’t have to hobble in and out of multiple court houses each day on crutches. In the situations where the judge didn’t automatically offer, I felt no remorse in asking to sit rather than stand if my case was going to take more than a minute or two.
And there are obstacles that can’t be overcome. This teacher cannot put mind over matter and improve her hearing so that she doesn’t need hearing aids. Her hearing is always going to exactly like it is now or worse. It is not going to get better outside of improvements in medical technology. If teaching makes her miserable due to the noise at assemblies, she is unlikely to spend the next 30 years grinning and bearing it. She is likely to look to another profession. If she is a good teacher otherwise – which I assume she is since the school is willing to accommodate her – this would be a loss to the kids she would have taught.
“Clearly, you understand this as well as you understand the legal system.”
So, pretty well, then. (Hint: I was on the law review).
wasn’t is Spock from Star Trek that said something about the needs of the many out weighing the needs of the few?
i understand that there are people who are disabled, or affected by certain things. but then i wonder. it is right that the natural reaction of ‘people’ should be governed, mandated and changed for 1? this (?) precedent is rather scary if you think about it.
what if this 1 person were sensitive to light? would it be justified to mandate that the rest work and live in dim surroundings?
what if a certain style of music caused some few to become instantly enraged and abusive? should all music of that style be banned?
More than likely in this egalitarian climate of no one wins or loses, a clapping ban negates the embarrassment of kids unfamiliar with that narrative actually recognizing achievementâ€¦.and tacitly recognizing failure.
I have lived with a peanut allergy my whole life. I wonder the same thing: when does a group need to be peanut-free and when does the allergic individual need to leave a space? Personally, I believe my safety is my responsibility. And it has been all my life.
My offering is at http://www.goldcoastsentinel.com.au/podcast/narrative-214-the-school-of-political-correctness