Chaperoning double-standard

In a fit of madness or something, I signed up months ago to chaperone my daughter’s fifth-grade class on a trip to DC. Being that I am her father, I figured this might pose some logistical problems in that I couldn’t both take her and her friends around the city and stay with them at the hotel at night. Same sex only, right? I figured all the parents would have to accept this.

Wrong. I discovered last week that the moms going on the trip are cleared to stay with their sons and his friends. Apparently it’s just the dads who aren’t allowed to stay with their opposite-sex child and her friends.

This is, of course, sexist to the hilt and it makes me mad. I like being involved in my kids’ lives and I’m as responsible a parent as they come. I’ve coached my kids’ teams (after a background check) and volunteered at my kids’ school (after a background check). Oh, and I’ve also held a top-freaking-secret security clearance. My middle name is “trustworthy,” but it doesn’t seem to matter. Even in 2013, a man apparently isn’t entirely welcome in the world of education.

Maybe it’s because there aren’t enough dads to chaperone all the boys and so the moms have to chip in, but I’m unconvinced. It seems to be to be a complete, total double-standard.

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