Colchester primary school bans football after children pick up bad habits from World Cup stars
A Colchester primary school has banned pupils from playing football for a week - after some of the youngsters brought the ugly side of the beautiful game to the school playing field.
Home Farm Primary School headteacher Richard Potter sent an email to parents on Wednesday warning them of the ban after some of the children were spotted copying some of the diving and bad behaviour of the professionals.
The pupils have been told they can earn back their football time by agreeing a code of conduct for break and playtime matches, with the aim of developing their sense of fair play and sportsmanship.
However, some parents feel the ban is heavy-handed.
One parent, who wished not to be named, said: “The World Cup should be an event that encourages more young people to get playing football, not less.
“The fact our headteacher has chosen to ban kids from playing football I feel is quite shocking.
“There must be another method he can use to discourage children from aggressive behaviour.
“Possibly the reason for children being aggressive is the tactics they may have seen during the England vs Columbia match.
“But don’t blame the game - lets get the ball rolling again.”
Mr Potter said one of the reasons football had been banned for the week was due to extension and building work at the school which had limited the space the children have to play.
“But we carried on with football because children need to blow off steam,” he said.
“However, many of the children were reenacting diving and emulating the trained, professional players they had seen.
“These are four to 11-year-olds who are trying to emulate the older players.
“This was causing a lot of arguments,
“So we have said there’s no football for one week, and for that reason each class has to write their own rules so that it is played fairly.
“They need to sit, supported by teachers, and come up with rules for fair and cooperative play.
“I am not anti-football at all.
“This is a learning opportunity to build on their sportsmanship.”