Parents angry as boys massage girls during kindergarten activities.

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    Oct 22, 2023

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Parents of children at Binh Minh Kindergarten in Hanoi's Hoang Mai District were dismayed as boys were required to massage and wash girls' feet on Vietnamese Women's Day.


On Friday, a concerned parent shared an incident in an online group comprising over 66,000 members. According to the parent, girls in their child's class were observed participating in an activity where they were seen wearing towels wrapped around them, similar to a spa setting, while the boys massaged their heads.

The parent expressed disapproval towards the inappropriate behavior demonstrated by both boys and girls. Additionally, they mentioned their uncertainty about how to effectively communicate their concerns to the teacher of the classroom.

"The parent expressed their belief that the act is unnecessary and inappropriate for girls, stating that washing girls' feet is unacceptable."

Numerous parents expressed their disagreement with the perceived "weird" and "unnecessary" activity, citing concerns regarding their children's education. They questioned the logic behind incorporating massages, arguing that it contradicted the principle of teaching children to respect personal boundaries and refrain from touching others' bodies.

On Friday, Nguyen Thi Lan Phuong, the vice principal of the kindergarten, affirmed that the massaging activity took place on Thursday as a part of a series of events organized to commemorate Vietnamese Women's Day (Oct. 20).

According to the school, female students were observed wearing either dresses or pants with towels wrapped around them. Phuong mentioned that various age groups of children were assigned different activities, such as creating postcards or inviting their mothers to class for hand massages. These activities were designed to assist children in expressing their emotions effectively.

Prior to arranging this year's activities, Phuong mentioned that the teachers had already engaged in prior discussions with parents regarding the plans. In addition, certain parents actively participated by lending materials to the school for these activities. However, due to varying perspectives among parents, it is possible that not all of them felt completely at ease with the arrangements.

According to Phuong, the school will gain insights from this experience and make sure that teachers are informed to prevent any similar incidents in the future.

In 2003, the Binh Minh kindergarten was established with a dedicated staff of 23 teachers. Currently, the school proudly accommodates a total enrollment of 144 students this year.

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