School district bans tag to protect students' 'physical and emotional safety'

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It's 2015, and yet (and therefore?) a school district in Washington has banned the game of tag. Q13 Fox News' Steve Kiggins reports the Mercer Island School District has deemed the popular recess game unsafe.


It's not clear whether there was a specific incident that led to the decision, but Kiggins reports that most parents were surprised by it, and frustrated that they had no input.

District rep Mary Grady did not return requests for comment. But in an Orwellian statement to Kiggins that is worth reading in full, she said:

"The Mercer Island School District and school teams have recently revisited expectations for student behavior to address student safety. This means while at play, especially during recess and unstructured time, students are expected to keep their hands to themselves. The rationale behind this is to ensure the physical and emotional safety of all students.

"School staffs are working with students in the classroom to ensure that there are many alternative games available at recess and during unsupervised play, so that our kids can still have fun, be with their friends, move their bodies and give their brains a break.”

It's not clear whether the ruling only applies to lower grades, or if the district's high school is also included. As of 2013 there were 4,262 students in the district.

Rob covers business, economics and the environment for Fusion. He previously worked at Business Insider. He grew up in Chicago.