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Don't Call Me Fat

Don't Call Me Fat

Listen to this 'Talk of the Nation' topic

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We all know kids can be cruel... particularly about appearance. If you're an overweight kid, your classmates are unlikely to let you forget it for a second. Used to be, intervention from a teacher or administrator could provide a brief respite for the tormented. But now schools are piling on too, even going so far as to include a student's BMI (body mass index) on his or her report card, right alongside those A's in algebra and Spanish and that B in social studies. Undeniably, obesity is a problem for American kids, and no one wants to see them suffer the health problems that accompany 50 or 100 — or more — extra pounds. But what about the mental anguish these kids deal with on a daily basis? Does making BMI a measure like an SAT or SOL score help identify kids in trouble, or does it just magnify their pain? As a parent, do you want your kids' physical fitness on their report cards? How does it help... or hurt?

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