Just when I thought the infantilization of our children could not get any worse, along come the Pittsburgh Public Schools to prove me wrong:
On the first day of school, September 3, 2009, all other high school students, with the exception of those who attend special schools or regional special education programs, will have a four-hour delayed start as District high schools and 6-12 schools devote the morning to the new 9th graders as part of the 9th Grade Nation First Day of School Transition Day program. The staggered start times for the first day of school ensure that new 9th grade students receive a special welcome and the full attention of the high school staff.
That’s right, folks. This year’s 9th graders, most of whom are 14 years old, are coming from the city’s big middle schools, have been in school for at least 9 years, and likely have been in Head Start or day care or pre-school programs far longer than that, need an extra-special four-hour transition period when all those big, scary sophomores, juniors, and seniors aren’t yet in the building, so they can get acclimated to their surroundings, feel some warm and fuzzy vibes, and maybe find their lockers or their first few classrooms without the fear of wetting themselves before nap time.