I was teaching my students PIE, the Principle of Inclusion and Exclusion. This was the last lesson of 2010 and it seemed natural to have a party and bring some pie. It appears that the school has a new rule. If I want to bring any food to class, I need to submit a request that includes all food ingredients. The administrators send it to the parents asking them to sign a permission slip and then, if I receive all the slips back in time, I can bring pie to school. We had to study PIE without pie.
Our most important task as parents and teachers is to teach kids to make their own decisions. They are in high school; they know by now about their own allergies and diets; they should be able to avoid foods that might do them harm. I understand why schools create such rules, but we are treating the students like small children. We can’t protect them forever; they need to learn to protect themselves.
Next semester, we will study the mathematics of fair division. I will have to teach them how to cut a cake without a cake.Share: