Earlier in the week, Riverside Elementary School in Jeffersonville, Ind., sent a letter home that said, “At this age, children are dating and breaking up within days of each other," according to Fox 59 in Indianapolis. "This leads to many broken hearts, which carry over into the classroom.”
The letter stated that the students had until Wednesday to “make sure that relationships have ended" and asked parents to sign the letter and return it with their child to the school.
Parent Briana Bower posted the letter on her Facebook page.
“The school has no right to pressure my child & put a DEADLINE on when he ‘has to’ end his relationship,” she wrote in the post. “That’s MY child & I will not enforce this new rule of theirs. As long as he’s not holding her hand or whatever at school it’s none of their business who he calls his girlfriend.”
She said her 10-year-old son has a girlfriend who is his best friend and they spend time together after school.
“No, they’re not romantic together, they’re too young. However, they talk every day,” she told Fox 59.
In their clarification, the school said a group of fifth-grade teachers wrote the letter with the intention of protecting students’ feelings, encouraging developmentally appropriate relationships and avoiding distractions during class time.
“In retrospect, the phrases, ‘zero dating policy’ and the request to take Tuesday and Wednesday to ‘end’ relationships misrepresented the intentions of the teachers," the school said, according to WDRB. "While the team of teachers were trying to protect students, the wording is what caused alarm.”
The school said the letter had not been reviewed by the principal or district officials.
Bower wrote on Facebook that she has never had a problem with the school before.
"I just think boundaries were crossed with telling my child he had to end his relationship by a certain date without addressing anything with me first," she wrote.