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Discussion Starter #1
So to make a long story short, the agriculture department at my school is getting young horses. I am totally and completely against this as kids who have never as much as patted a horse will be around and allowed to lunge, lead, show weanlings, yearlings and 2yos.
According to the ag teachers, Mr K will be helping with the horses. Now Mr K is a very experience horse man, who I do respect and he does own a stud and breeds horses. However, Mr K is a P.E, and Marine teacher. Personally, I feel that he will not be able to be there everytime someone goes near those horses.

I know what young horses are like and I don't think that it was a wise decision for the school to purchase them. I've been through it and I still am going through the drama with a young horse.

NOW THE BIG CATCH HERE IS THAT THEY ARE GETTING ABUSED FILLIES. ABUSED *@^$#&$% FILLIES.'
Their logic is that they will get the students to help fatten the fillies up and feed them and that the fillies will learn to trust them. Now my opinion is of course they will be quiet to begin with. They've been starved for Pete's sake. But as soon as they get some feed into them, they're gonna liven up.

I don't care if they're is teacher supervision. I know for one, that the ag teachers have bare minimum experience with horses. They know nothing! Sure they might be able to lead one and tell when its lame, but they have no experience training or handling young horses. Heck, I'm confident around young horses, but I'm not gonna train em.

All of the horsey people (about 8 of us) have been asked to participate at lunch and after school with them and I have no problem with that, but I still think that its a dangerous idea.

I mean, abused fillies and beginners? I see a law suit coming on as soon as the first kid gets a good kick in the ribs.

The teachers don't value my opinion, even though I own a young horse. They don't respect the fact that I know what young horses are like and how easy they are to ruin.

Am I just crazy and overthinking this or do you think this is a valid reason for concern? Opinions, guys?
 

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I think that you're right. It isn't a good idea to let people that are not experienced "play" with horses without supervision. I think that the horses will be spoiled very soon. I'm also of the opinion that an abused horse needs one or two persons that care about it (to build trust) and not different students.
 

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Were the horses abused or just neglected? There's a world of difference between the two, you know. Not feeding them isn't really abuse; it's neglect of the highest order, but not abuse.

How old are these fillies? Weanlings, yearlings, 2 y/os? The age factor will also make a difference, as babies haven't been taught any manners and they have short attention spans.

I'm not sure I like the idea of getting young animals, but are these city children who have never been around animals, or are they farm children? That too, makes a difference.

I've never heard of a suburban school having the facilities to house animals, so is this an agricultural type of place? If so, I'm thinking most of these children have been around large animals at some point.

Seriously, if you're that concerned have your parents and other adults go to the school board. If they don't address the issue, you can go to the state board of education.

Someone higher up on the food chain than the teachers had to approve the acquisition of these animals, and if parents voice their disapproval, maybe something will be done.
 

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You can't fix stupid. Young horses (even NOT abused) are lots of effort and time AND knowledge, but if you add abuse on top of it it's just WAY too much. My university (Animal Sci department) takes in horses, but those are older horses with riding experience and without dangerous habits. I never heard about universities around here taking in youngsters (much less abused). I hope they have a good insurance if something goes wrong... :?
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Just to clarify, I live in a semi-rural area and my school is quite large. The majority of kids have never had large animals or let alone touched one. There are probably 10 people at my school who have horses and ride etc.

These fillies will be 6 mo's when we get them. And yes they have been neglected, and abused. One of them was actually shot and is very lucky to be alive.

Even if they weren't neglected, I still wouldn't want the school to get young horses but their reasoning is now that there is more danger in getting older riding horses. I'm sure there is just as much danger with abused fillies. I reckon the teachers just don't want to do the paperwork, thats why they're getting younger horses.
 

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I wish I was at your school when I was growing up. Under experienced supervision why not? In FFA students get steers/heifers they can do the same if not more damage than a horse.
 

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in my opinion you should be very concerned. no inexperienced person should be allowed to "play" with any horse, young, abused, calm, safe, broke, wild, nothing. no matter what. someone who doesnt know what to do can seriously mess up themselves and the horse. ugh adults dont think clearly sometimes
 

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Is there anyway that you can go over what the teachers are wanting to do. I'm sorry, but I really don't know how the education system is lined out in Australia.

You're right though, there is a VERY valid reason for concern.
 

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I went to a pretty rural high school....We had a herd of 150-200 cattle, 7 or 8 pigs that we bred yearly then slaughtered at the end of the year and had a GIANT barbecue, we had sheep for a few years, then some llamas, and now they're back to sheep again. We also grow strawberries and oranges. There is what looks like a little QH mare that keeps residence with the cattle. She's very flighty and I'm not even sure she's ever been halter broken. My junior year, there was only myself and another girl in the whole entire ag department (also the largest department in the school---for every 100 kids, 45 of them belonged to ag) who knew how to handle a horse, and we couldn't get within ten feet of her.

I think if they want to get literally "school" horses, they should go the safe route and get a nice old schoolmaster or two, but if the ag teacher REALLY wants to get a baby, they should get a foal without any traumatic experiences who's been imprinted on and knows what its supposed to act like around people, and then make sure all of the parents sign releases, and all of the other ag teachers sign off on not handling the foal when the knowledgeable one is not present.
 

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Can I ask where in Australia you are? My friend has a kid in a school in QLD with an ag program that she's in.
This is beyond stupid. I would be getting a respected trainer in and have them talk to the principal and try to get them to see reason.
There is no method in this madness, only law suits.
I can't see how an older pasture puff would be more dangerous than abused fillies...
 

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Can I ask where in Australia you are? My friend has a kid in a school in QLD with an ag program that she's in.
This is beyond stupid. I would be getting a respected trainer in and have them talk to the principal and try to get them to see reason.
There is no method in this madness, only law suits.
I can't see how an older pasture puff would be more dangerous than abused fillies...
Amir, I'm down on the mid north coast of NSW just south of a little coastal town called Port Macquarie. Its in between Coffs Harbour and Newcastle.

I completely agree that older horses would be more beneficial but this was the answer I got today from my ag teacher.

"We intend to sell them as soon as they're old enough to be broken in. We do not want students riding older horses because we feel it could be dangerous and therefore we are getting younger horses just for the kids to train and learn on."

My response="Why not just get older horses so the kids can learn how to lunge and groom a horse before you let them loose on babies?"

TEACHER THEN WALKED OFF ON ME!

I mean seriously!!!!!!!!! They expect beginners to halter break, and teach them to lunge? And then they expect to sell them on and make a profit? Now most of the other kids in my school dismiss me for saying we shouldn't be getting them and in fact people in my ag classes who have no experience whatsoever, are getting angry at me for saying it.

I've had enough, I'm going to write letters to the school, newspaper etc.
 

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I wish I was at your school when I was growing up. Under experienced supervision why not? In FFA students get steers/heifers they can do the same if not more damage than a horse.
I agree with this. As long as they are with experienced and strict supervision I don't see the problem with it.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
I agree with this. As long as they are with experienced and strict supervision I don't see the problem with it.
Thats the problem, they're not! There is only 1 experienced horsey teacher at our school and he is a PE teacher. He is not an ag teacher, and he is head of a few departments. I've talked to Mr K and he said he'd only be up there occasionally to help.
The ag teachers have no experience whatsoever with horses, God forbid young abused fillies and they are going to let kids run loose on them.

I'm so glad I do ag, hopefully I can at least salvage these ponehs just a little.
 

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n/m I'm just repeating what other have said but I agree with what the school is doing.
I really don't understand how people can agree with this. Everyone knows horses are dangerous and green + green = black and blue.
I can understand sheep, llamas, pigs and other animals, but not horses.

The OP has clearly stated time and time again that there will be NO experienced horse person with the ag classes constantly supervising these children.

All I can hope is the parents all sign releases and fully understand just how dangerous this can be.

If they want horses they should get pasture puffs that are unable to be ridden since they don't want riding horses. Which I spose is the only smart thing they've said. They're teaching about care, not how to ride. You can teach care for the older horse.

Gidji I'm in QLD. Kinda really glad it wasn't my friends kids school or I'd be going in tomorrow and punching the headmaster in the face... I have faith that her kid could handle this, but not the others in her ag class from what she's told me.
Good on you for writing letters to the school and newspaper and letting the community know that this is a stupid idea. Take it to Today Tonight! They'll have a field day with this...
 

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Thats the problem, they're not! There is only 1 experienced horsey teacher at our school and he is a PE teacher. He is not an ag teacher, and he is head of a few departments. I've talked to Mr K and he said he'd only be up there occasionally to help.
The ag teachers have no experience whatsoever with horses, God forbid young abused fillies and they are going to let kids run loose on them.

I'm so glad I do ag, hopefully I can at least salvage these ponehs just a little.
Then what are the Ag teachers trained in? Do they do cattle or crops? Have there ever been horses in the ag classes before?
 

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What doesn't kill you makes you stronger. I wouldn't have the kids welfare in mind but the horses. As long as they are getting what they need (nutrition wise)...
BTW- If the school doesn't get the fillies... What would happen to them?
How good is the horse market over there for neglected yearlings/horses etc... ?
 

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What doesn't kill you makes you stronger. I wouldn't have the kids welfare in mind but the horses. As long as they are getting what they need (nutrition wise)...
BTW- If the school doesn't get the fillies... What would happen to them?
How good is the horse market over there for neglected yearlings/horses etc... ?
I wonder what will happen to them AFTER school will done with them, they are grown and not cute anymore, and have zero actual training/riding what so ever. I'm not sure about Australia, but in US it's straight road to the kill pen.
 

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I wonder what will happen to them AFTER school will done with them, they are grown and not cute anymore, and have zero actual training/riding what so ever. I'm not sure about Australia, but in US it's straight road to the kill pen.
You're right, not a lot of people are going to want them. Only someone that has a lot of experience, time and money on their hands are going to want them.
It's all well and good that the school wants to save them and make their lives better but realistically that's only going to be for a couple years at most.
Lacyloo, you might not have the welfare of the students in mind but I'm sure their parents will when they get kicked because they don't know what they're doing and don't know how to discipline and correctly manage an abused foal. These days the parents are likely to try and sue the school.
It was a good idea in theory. The practice of it will more than likely turn for the worst.
If the school doesn't buy them there are plenty of places around Australia that go to the doggers and take as many horses they can. They feed them up, put some training in and sell them for a little profit so they can fund the next lot of horses they rescue.
 
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