With nine bedrooms and 15 bathrooms, the estate shares many of the same architectural elements including a columned portico overlooking Galveston Bay that looks almost identical to the presidential home in DC. The historic 34-room mansion is known locally as “The First Texas White House” and was built in 1924 by the 31st governor of the Lone Star State.
Recently, I read about a father, Paul Wallich, who built a camera-mounted drone helicopter to follow his grade-school-aged son to the bus stop. This “safety first” preoccupation emerged over thirty years ago with the Tylenol scare and with children’s faces appearing on milk cartons. So we put knee-pads, safety belts and helmets on them…at the dinner table. Yet, has the world become that much more dangerous? But our society has created pervasive fears about letting kids be independent—and the consequences for our kids are serious.” Unfortunately, over-protecting our young people has had an adverse effect on them.
If you’re younger, it’s unlikely you did any of these things.
He wants to make sure his son arrives at the bus stop safe and sound. “Children of risk-averse parents have lower test scores and are slightly less likely to attend college than offspring of parents with more tolerant attitudes toward risk,” says a team led by Sarah Brown of the University of Sheffield in the UK.
There’s no doubt the gizmo provides an awesome show-and-tell contribution. Aversion to risk may prevent parents from making inherently uncertain investments in their children’s human capital; it’s also possible that risk attitudes reflect cognitive ability, researchers say.” Sadly, this report won’t help us unless we do something about it.
In my mind, Paul Wallich gives new meaning to the term “helicopter parent.” While I applaud the engagement of this generation of parents and teachers, it’s important to recognize the unintended consequences of our engagement. Adults continue to vote to remove playground equipment from parks so kids won’t have accidents; to request teachers stop using red ink as they grade papers and even cease from using the word “no” in class. I’m sorry—but while I understand the intent to protect students, we are failing miserably at preparing them for a world that will not be risk-free.
We want the best for our students, but research now shows that our “over-protection, over-connection” style has damaged them. Psychologists in Europe have discovered that if a child doesn’t play outside and is never allowed to experience a skinned knee or a broken bone, they frequently have phobias as adults.