8-year-old Sarah Auger of St-Jean-sur-Richelieu, QC was forbidden from reading on the school bus.
The heels on the bus go "no no no." (stock photo)
It's bad enough when schools clamp down on the creativity of their students. When it starts happening on the way to school, then it starts feeling like something out of 1984. Unfortunately, that's exactly what happened recently in southern Quebec, Canada.
Sarah Auger is an 8-year-old girl who loves reading, and often used to spend her 20-minute ride on the school bus with a book in her hands. Her bus driver, however, told her she had to stop. He said her reading posed a risk to the other students on the bus.
A risk of what? New ideas?! You don't own these kids, bus driver man!
He claimed that the other students might stand up to see what she's reading, putting them in danger. Also, she could poke her eye with the corner of the book. He didn't even mention paper cuts, which just goes to show how little thought he put into this.
Educated or institutionalized? (stock photo)
Her father Daniel Abel, meanwhile, wants to nurture her love of reading, and is none too pleased with this driver. He told the CBC he wants this rule to change, saying, "I find it stupid and useless." There's that famous French Canadian tact for you. He took his complaints to the school board, who were no help. They said that whoever drives the bus is allowed to make the rules. However, they conceded that reading obviously wasn't dangerous.
The school board's statement added that students are required to keep all belongings, including books, in their bags while they're on the bus. What are they supposed to do, just sit with their arms folded? Is this a school system or a gulag? Break the chains off these children's hearts, St-Jean-sur-Richelieu, and set their imaginations free. Free them, and free yourselves.