A middle school student was reprimanded by school officials in a Georgia public school district after giving a crying fellow student a hug.
The student at the Villa Rica Middle School, located in Carroll County, was consoling her friend when she was disciplined, NBC affiliate WXIA reported.
The incident was reported on Facebook by the girl's mother and went viral.
Punishing the student rather than applauding her means a great teaching opportunity was lost, says longtime conservative activist Janice Crouse.
"She was not showing affection so much as sympathy and caring and compassion, and those are traits that you want a child to learn," she observes.
The mother showed the paperwork in which the child was given a written warning for the "level one offense" of inappropriately showing affection.
"Yes, there are rules against excessive expression of physical affection," Crouse says. "But to reprimand a child who's giving comfort to a distraught classmate I think is just going to an extreme."