The Catholic High Schools for Boys in Little Rock, Arkansas, certainly deserved a round of applause when this story surfaced back in 2016, and it certainly still deserves one today.
If you didn’t catch the story at the time, all you need to know is that a simple policy geared toward personal responsibilities and consequences (and captured by a piece of paper posted within the school) delivered a rather simple, yet powerful message. A message that today’s millennials so desperately need to see and hear:
“If you are dropping off your son’s forgotten lunch, books, homework, equipment, etc., please TURN AROUND and exit the building,” the sign read. “Your son will learn to problem-solve in your absence.”
See the sign for yourself:
Posted last year on Facebook along with its caption reading “Welcome to Catholic High. We teach reading, writing, arithmetic, and problem-solving,” the sign went on to receive over 71,000 likes and 119,000 shares from parents who appreciated its impressive words of wisdom.
“This is all about teaching young men (high schoolers are not children) to become responsible adult men and spouses and fathers through allowing ‘soft failures,’” one parent, Margaret Barsocchi Willis, wrote.
Principal Steve Straessle told The Washington Post that it has long been a part of the school’s mission to teach young men to be independent, and he was surprised that others found that idea — or the policy — so shocking.
“The policy is one of the many policies that we have, hoping to help build self-reliance and self-advocacy in our kids,” Straessle said. “We just want a boy to figure out what comes next when Mom or Dad are not there to guide them. … We’ve been amazed that a school teaching self-reliance and personal responsibility seems like a novel idea.”
A novel idea, indeed. Well done, Mr. Straessle. Now, if only policies like this were in place at all schools.