An Indiana student refused to do her homework, and she wasn't afraid to say so.
Instead of dutifully sucking it up, the eighth grader penned an articulate explanation of why she refused to do her homework - which was to figure out her body mass index (BMI).
The calculation, which gives a rough indication of health by dividing weight by height squared, has well documented pitfalls. And in recent years the BMI has fallen out of favour with the medical community since it is not the most accurate indicator of health.
"How could someone who stays fit, eats healthy, and has a low metabolism be in danger of heart disease and diabetes?" read the girl's essay. "Oh, that's right, because she isn't in danger of obesity and heart disease."
In fact, taken alone a BMI can actually produce misleading results in cases like this one, in which a child has an athletic or muscular build. (Newsflash: muscle is heavy, and a perfectly fit and healthy individual can have a BMI that puts them in an "obese" category when they are not.)
So teachers, take note: it's probably high time to retire the BMI once and for all, and leave the work of assessing healthy weight to pediatricians. Though well-intentioned, in your quest to educate you can do more harm than good.
"My BMI is none of your concern because my body and BMI are perfect and beautiful just the way they are," the student wrote.
Man, I have no clue how this generation of kids became so outspoken and vocal about addressing their needs and views. I know I certainly wasn't that girl.
As parents, we take so much heat for mollycoddling and enabling our kids. Seems to me, though far from perfect, we must be doing something right if we're raising children who are passionate and not afraid to stand up for themselves.