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Old 19.05.2015, 08:57
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School asking children to take knifs to school - is this legal

to my horror, we got this letter from the school this week. my first thought is that they are absolutely insane but then again this is CH where children’s safety doesn’t seem be taking into account (well, according to them they are responsible for their own actions), but to expect 7-11 year olds to carry 12 inch blade to school!!!

is this illegal?
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Old 19.05.2015, 08:58
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Re: School asking children to take knifs to school - is this legal

12CM blade sorry
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Old 19.05.2015, 08:59
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Re: School asking children to take knifs to school - is this legal

It's project week by the looks of it where the kids normally do an outdoor activity. They probably plan on using the knife for crafts or wood work. Or animal slaughter. No need to worry.
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Old 19.05.2015, 09:00
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Re: School asking children to take knifs to school - is this legal

Not such a big deal in the land of S.A.K.'s ..... especially as 12cm is considerably shorter than 12 inches.
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Old 19.05.2015, 09:05
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Re: School asking children to take knifs to school - is this legal

Looking at the picture at the bottom of the page, it seems they've got prehistoric man as their topic. Have you asked you're kids what they going to be doing? A week outdoors bashing rocks together and making arrowheads out of flint? I wish my school had been that awesome.
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Old 19.05.2015, 09:12
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Re: School asking children to take knifs to school - is this legal

I think it's more to the point that someone falls over and impails themselves or gashes their hand open while trying to do a trick with the knife. My son managed to cut himself with his 2inch blade a few months ago.
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Old 19.05.2015, 09:15
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Re: School asking children to take knifs to school - is this legal

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I think it's more to the point that someone falls over and impails themselves or gashes their hand open while trying to do a trick with the knife. My son managed to cut himself with his 2inch blade a few months ago.
They can do that anywhere - slip on a wet tree root walking, fall, bang head on edge of rock. Slip on some ice bang head, think nothing is wrong, die. Slip on mud, fall into 5cm high stream, drown.

I'd be more worried your son doesn't know which end of the sharp pointy thing is sharp and pointy than him doing a bit of whittling in the woods.


The whole things sounds like brilliant fun - can I go.
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Old 19.05.2015, 09:17
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Re: School asking children to take knifs to school - is this legal

I can understand your concern, but I think you don't need to worry too much. Part of the system here is to teach responsibility, not fear of the worst. Anyway, what would a "camping" trip to the forest be without a pocket knife??
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Old 19.05.2015, 09:18
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Re: School asking children to take knifs to school - is this legal

Use it as a teaching opportunity. And +1 on how cool that school is.


Yes - kids are going to cut themselves. That too is a learning moment.


And yes - I am a parent.


http://meritbadge.org/wiki/index.php/Whittling_Chip


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Totin'_Chip
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Old 19.05.2015, 09:19
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Re: School asking children to take knifs to school - is this legal

It says that children "may" carry a pocketknife on these trips, not that they must. So if you're not confident your kid can handle the responsibility, it's OK not to give her one yet. And 12cm is the maximum allowed length, shorter is OK too.

8-9 years old strikes me as about right for a first pocketknife though, to be honest. Old enough to have concrete tasks they want to do with a knife (especially in the forest: building play-houses out of sticks and string is a big one at that age, so is sharpening sticks to roast sausages on) and old enough to understand instructions like "never cut toward your hand".

If you do give your kid a knife, make sure it's a good sharp one. Dull knife = more pressure required = actually more likely to cut yourself when the blade slips. Then go out and practice a bit yourselves, emphasizing safe vs. unsafe ways to cut off a branch, cut a length of string, whittle a stick to a sharp point etc.
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Old 19.05.2015, 09:19
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Re: School asking children to take knifs to school - is this legal

I was 5 or 6 in 60's Britain, when I took my first mini pocket knife to school ..... it lasted till morning playtime before it got confiscated, because I was flashing it around to all my mates.
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Old 19.05.2015, 09:30
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Re: School asking children to take knifs to school - is this legal

They do not ask to bring knives, but allow to bring knives (dürfen)

How else do you want do make good use of the lunch fire pit in the woods? Prepare the sausage and make a pointy stick to roast it over the fire?

If your kid have never learned proper knives manners and/or do not know how to use it properly (or are just clumsy) to not give them one for the project week (but do the former a.s.a.p more project weeks and fields trips are coming).

PS: Here is one suitable for kindergarten kids: http://www.victorinox.com/ch/product...inox/0.2363.T5

And as MathNut said: Keep it sharp. Nothing is more dangerous than a dull blade, be it axe, knife, sword etc.
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Old 19.05.2015, 09:41
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Re: School asking children to take knifs to school - is this legal

At least they realize that knives are better than Handys.

My daughter was given her first knife when she was 4 in the Waldspielgruppe. I thought it was kind of funny at first but then I realized that it was pretty cool. I made sure to buy knives for all our friends' kids back in the States but I think that their parents immediately confiscated them.
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Old 19.05.2015, 09:46
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Re: School asking children to take knifs to school - is this legal

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At least they realize that knives are better than Handys.

My daughter was given her first knife when she was 4 in the Waldspielgruppe. I thought it was kind of funny at first but then I realized that it was pretty cool. I made sure to buy knives for all our friends' kids back in the States but I think that their parents immediately confiscated them as they already have semi-automatic 9mm pistols.
You took knives to a gun fight?
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Old 19.05.2015, 10:31
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Re: School asking children to take knifs to school - is this legal

My eldest (2nd grade) had to take a knife and chopping board recently to make fruit kebabs for znüni, I sent her with an 8cm vegetable knife, I was a little shocked because I am still after one year a little UK conditioned! Still raises my BP and heart rate every time I think about my little one using those big spike things in kindergarten! I guess perhaps 12cm is not unreasonable although I know anything over 6cm is illegal to carry in the UK, I would guess not the case here though!
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Old 19.05.2015, 10:32
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Re: School asking children to take knifs to school - is this legal

Sounds ok to me.
Surely best to show the children how to use a pocket knife in a safe way?
This is what we do in British Scouts.the young people are shown how to use a knife safely both for them and others around them eg don't wave it around open near other people..they then get a knife licence and must have this with them to use a knife on any meeting or camp .
Bear Grylls would be proud!
For those who don't know he is Chief Scout.
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Old 19.05.2015, 10:44
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Re: School asking children to take knifs to school - is this legal

Agree with all the above - and the letter further says that when they are walking, the knives have to be put away.
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Old 19.05.2015, 10:54
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Re: School asking children to take knifs to school - is this legal

Isn't it great to live in a country where knives are used as a tool and not as a weapon? I love the idea of it being engraved. If you are in Ibach, home of Victorinox, they do engraving for 1-2 francs a knife.

Be happy that your child will enjoy using the knife as a tool, teach your child how to use it properly and above all, trust that everything will be OK. Fear reaps negative reactions. Trust reaps positive ones.
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Old 19.05.2015, 10:58
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Re: School asking children to take knifs to school - is this legal

Agree with the above.
Accidents happen when the young people don't have the correct knowledge to use a knife safely and correctly whether in a kitchen or in the forest.
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Old 19.05.2015, 11:06
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Re: School asking children to take knifs to school - is this legal

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Sounds ok to me.
Surely best to show the children how to use a pocket knife in a safe way?
This is what we do in British Scouts.the young people are shown how to use a knife safely both for them and others around them eg don't wave it around open near other people..they then get a knife licence and must have this with them to use a knife on any meeting or camp .
Bear Grylls would be proud!
For those who don't know he is Chief Scout.
I couldn't agree more with this and what everyone else has said. Far better to learn to use knives properly and safely at a young age in my opinion.

I was a cub leader with the British Scouts in Brussels and knife safety was a big part of the programme.

In the OP's case the knife is optional, must be foldable and a maximum of 12cm long and kept in the backpack whilst going to and from the site and ideally also labelled in order to avoid knives accidentally changing owners. The school is not just randomly saying that the kids can take knives in to school, they are for a specific activity at a specific time.
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