A Dundee school is asking pupils to sign contracts to allow them to play football at lunchtimes in a move which has been branded ‘ludicrous’.
Forthill Primary sent out contracts to its Primary 5, 6 and 7 pupils with a list of 17 rules they must adhere to when playing during breaks.
Both pupils and their parents have been asked to sign the contracts, with rules including — ‘I will not hog the ball’, ‘I will not deliberately chase on the pitch or swipe the ball from anyone’ and ‘I will not chant, use banter or wahoys’.
Pupils have been warned they may be banned from playing for the rest of the term if they don’t stick to the rules.
Ryan Finnegan, whose son Jamie, 12, is in P7, described the contracts as “political correctness gone mad”.
Ryan, a Level 3 SFA coach, said: “We couldn’t believe what we were reading.
“The staff have taken this totally out of proportion. Some children might be a bit over-boisterous but they’re just kids.
“I showed a friend of mine, who works for Dundee United, and he said it was ludicrous — it basically says that children can’t tackle each other. It also says ‘don’t hog the ball’. Could you imagine if Messi or Ronaldo had that in their contracts?
“The council wants to get children involved in activities to keep them fit and active.
“But this will put kids off if they’re scared of getting into trouble.”
Convener of children and families services, Stewart Hunter, said he would be speaking to the education director about the matter, adding: “It’s not a council-wide policy. We give head teachers autonomy to make these types of decisions and to run our schools. There may have been a series of events leading up to this.”
No one from the school was available for comment today.
A Dundee City Council spokesman said: “The letter has been issued following a number of issues that have occurred this school year during break and lunchtime football games.
“These then, at times, have been carried into the general playground or into teaching time.
“Children were directly involved with staff in suggesting the contents of the agreement.
“Any parent with concerns about this should contact the school to discuss them.”