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Long Island middle school bans sports balls, tag due to playground injuries

Cameron Smith
Prep Rally

When this story first hit Prep Rally's radar, we had to check to make sure it wasn't April Fools Day. Alas, it's six months too early for that, and a school district in New York actually is enforcing one of the most ludicrous policies of all time.

As reported by CBS New York, a middle school on Long Island has banned all "hard" footballs and soccer balls as well as all baseball and lacrosse balls after a spate of injuries on the school's playground during recess. If you thought the regulations couldn't get any more Draconian than that, you're wrong; officials are also banning tag and cartwheels, unless they are "performed under supervision."

You can't make this stuff up.

The ban was instituted at Weber Middle School in Port Washington, N.Y. It was announced by Port Washington Schools Superintendent Kathleen Maloney, who insisted that the policy changes were necessary because of a rise in injuries at the school during recess.

"Some of these injuries can unintentionally become very serious, so we want to make sure our children have fun, but are also protected," Maloney told CBS New York.

Naturally, the question becomes, "How will the children have any fun if there isn't anything for them to play with?" In fact, the Weber student body is asking that already.

"Cartwheels and tag -- I think it's ridiculous they are banning that," one said."You go for recess -- that's your free time to go let loose and recharge," another said.

"That’s all we want to do," a third student said. "We're in school all day sitting behind the desk learning."

According to CBS New York, the emergency room director for Long Island Jewish Medical Center has reported seeing enough scrapes and head injuries to make him concerned about concussions.

Something tells Prep Rally there were plenty of scrapes on the playground 20 and 30 years ago, too. Luckily for those generations, no one was taking balls away during recess.

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