Opinions run hot over hand-held rubbish


A RYE mother’s complaint about her daughters being made to pick up rubbish in the schoolyard has collected plenty of comment on social media.

Messages posted on the Facebook page of the Mornington Peninsula News Group (publisher of The News) ran hot with comments for and against – well, mostly against –Lisa Stone. (“Mother’s call for safety first in schoolyard clean-ups”, The News 26/5/2015). In the article, Ms Stone complained about each of her three daughters being asked by teachers to pick up litter “with their bare hands” in the grounds of Rye Primary School.

She acknowledged collecting rubbish and keeping the grounds free of rubbish was an important way to teach children pride in their environment, but was “not willing to risk my daughter’s health in the process”.

Out of more than 100 comments on Facebook, most were unsympathetic: “Cotton wool mothering”, “helicopter parenting”, “get a grip”, “too precious” and “Oh, what a princess”.

On the plus side, Emma Prendergast said “cleaners are paid to pick up rubbish. Children are there to be taught. Period”.

Chantelle Lee Granger: “I would just tell my child not to pick the rubbish up – simple; don’t pick it up there’s no problem.”

Julie Ceschin had the last word: “According to opinion poll … the ‘get over it’ wins.”

A selection of what preceded that assessment:

Vicki Melzer: “Build a bridge and get over it, we all did it as kids.”

Maree Ryan: “Quick, call a waaaaaaambulance.”

Petrina Swagemakers: “I helped cook a bbq at my kid’s primary school years ago and grabbed the bucket of tongs … How was I to know they were for rubbish pick up lol … 200 sausages… 0 deaths.”

Chantal Lewis: “Pretty sure that’s how we had to pick it up back in the 80s lol. Toughen up princess!”

Jan Dickson: “Oh for god’s sake!! What is wrong with parenting these days?? I can’t believe some of the ridiculous things parents complain about. Get a grip.”

Wendy Clements: “Look lady, we did it when we were kids and it didn’t hurt us. Grow up and stop wrapping your kid in cotton wool. That’s why they get sick.”

Lynne Otter: “It never hurt us back in the day. Kids are more likely to pick up germs from just playing in the school yard than they are by picking up rubbish with bare hands. Teach them to put rubbish in the bin in the first place and wash their hands – problem solved!”

Clyde Ditch Dunkley: “Oh no, the world is going to end cotton wool kids.”

Megs Alyce-rose: “Yeah … what’s the problem? I’m sure if it was unsafe the teachers wouldn’t allow it.”

Emma Louise: “Yes, you are at school to learn, learn as much as you can and picking up rubbish is actually teaching your kid something. So wake up. Wash your hands after, no big deal.”

First published in the Southern Peninsula News – 2 June 2015


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