FatLand: The Early Days – 36

The Board of FatLand, although not officially incorporated and voted in as yet, now considered themselves the first responders because they had been the initiators of FatLand.  Each of them handled certain areas, some officially by assignment, some unofficially.  Charla had taken on, with Board approval, the building and running of FatLand schools, with the assistance of Bill.

Luckily the twelve schools -six elementary, three Junior Highs, two high schools, one college, as yet unaccredited- had been built before Bill disappeared. The Board knew that issues might develop around their housing capacity in the near future, but they had other areas of higher urgency at this time, so they left biodynamic questions for later.

Thus it came as something of a surprise to them when Charla reported on an issue pertaining to the elementary school students.

“Not one,”she said, “not two, but three classes of students from Happy River have come to their teachers in tears. The reason is that they thought they were being punished because there were only fat children with them in their class.”

“Oh my word,” Ronnie said.  “I guess we have some work to do.”

“I can see now,” Charla said, “that we have a lot to do in the way of developing fat-positive materials and even more importantly, attitudes. The problem as I now see is that we have to do more than that, though. We have to develop a sense of entitlement in our students. We have to make them feel that they are naturally as good as, as worthy as and entitled to the same feelings of ease and contentment with their world as any slim or “average” students. And that is until it becomes so completely natural for them to be in the same classes with a lot of other fat students tha they don’t even think about it.   I really forgot just how much self-hatred they absorbed even at their young ages. I guess it shows that this starts so early that we have to start countering it even earlier. Until we reach the point where kids coming into our schools have either been raised in FatLand or absorbed little or none of these self-hating tendencies.”

Darren said, “It sounds as if this problem goes deeper than lessons.  What can all of us do to make the idea of being fat natural and even healthy for our kids?  This is really important.”

“We’ve got to put our heads together on this one,” Brenton agreed. “Charla has identified the problem quite clearly.  Now we have to figure out how to create the kind of atmosphere in which our kids don’t identify being with other fat kids as a punishment.”

“Amen to that,” Angela said. The others nodded.

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