School authorities think Daddy doing this really means he’s making a bomb
Staff at a nursery school threatened to refer a four-year-old boy to a de-radicalisation programme after he drew pictures which they thought showed his father making a “cooker bomb”, according to the child’s mother.
The child’s drawing actually depicted his father cutting a cucumber with a knife, his mother says, but staff misheard his explanation and thought it referred to a type of improvised explosive device.
On Friday the boy’s mother showed the Guardian video footage of her son in which he is playing happily on the floor of his home, and is shown a cucumber and asked what it is. “A cuker-bum,” he says, before going back to his toys.
The footage was taken by the mother at the family home in Luton after the nursery discussed referring the child to a de-radicalisation programme out of concerns that pictures drawn by him referred to explosions and an improvised explosive device known as a “cooker bomb”.
In between the odd tear and laugh of disbelief, the mother spoke about the experience, which she said had left her shaken and upset, and involved her being told at one point: “Your children might not be taken off you … you can prove yourself innocent…”
A spokesperson for the nursery…said…“Under statutory guidance, as reflected by our own safeguarding policies, early years providers are required to record – and if necessary, report – any incidents that they feel may warrant further attention or discussion.
“In this instance, after seeking advice from the appropriate agencies, we concluded that no referral was necessary…”
Don’t you just love cover-your-ass language?
The child’s mother says that she remains disappointed that no apology was made and claims to have come under pressure from the nursery to sign a form which appeared to endorse its assessment.
“When I dropped him in one day they were there as a pack, with his various pictures and a report,” she said.
“Some of the pictures were just scribbles, but I said that I knew one of them and it was of his dad cutting a cucumber. She said: ‘Well, he said to us that it is a cooker bomb.’ For the life of me I didn’t associate the two words.”
…She said that she was left distraught by the experience and particularly by what she says was a mention of social services. “The thing you think about is that they take children away from families,” she said, “so that was the worst thing you could say to a parent…”
The conversation, she says, also turned to what her son had been watching on television: “I said to her: ‘Can we just put it to bed? I won’t let him watch Power Rangers … I actually went home and put parental control over the kiddie channels…”
“Initially I was so upset and distraught that I told him not to do any more drawings … God bless him, he said: ‘I won’t draw anything … I’ll just draw a house, or the remote control. And I said: ‘Don’t draw the remote!’”
Sounds like anything that could happen here in the Land of the Free and the Home of the Brave.
Petty bureaucrats, small-minded authority pimps in charge of children want to run other people’s lives as if everyone shared the fear-and-trembling crucial to their own pitiful existence.
BTW, this isn’t so much a Liberal vs Conservative thing. Pointy-headed psychologizers are as responsible for the demise of much Western education as anyone else. Mostly worrying that you may harm a child’s self-image for life by suggesting they actually learn stuff.
Governments have way too many crap politicians who have learned it’s easier to pass repressive laws by shouting it’s needed to “protect our children”.