Point/Counterpoint: PDA in a school setting


Kayla Kapralova

Based on a survey of 360 students, 44 percent of students believe PDA is acceptable on campus while 56 percent believe it is not.

PDA is appropriate

by Kayla Kapralova

Public displays of affection (PDA) are far from rare on most high school campuses. However, the appropriateness of PDA, especially in a school setting, is largely debated. PDA shouldn’t be such a taboo topic to take part in. Not only should PDA be more accepted, but those who believe otherwise have flawed reasoning in doing so.

A common argument against PDA revolves around the personal disgust of those trying to get to class without having a couple in their way, engaging in things they’d rather not see. This is understandable, but if that couple is simply minding their own business, not infringing on your personal space and well-being, then it really isn’t your place to judge.

PDA is fine as long as it’s not reaching the point of egregiousness. As PDA is subjective, it is important to note that excessive PDA such as making out or groping in the hallways is justifiably socially unacceptable. There’s a fine line between appropriate and inappropriate, and the majority of students respect that line.

There is nothing wrong with casually showing affection to another prior to going to class or leaving their company. There’s simply no validity in feeling disgust or anger when that sweet junior couple kiss goodbye before fourth period.

Another argument against PDA in school involves the idea of age and general appropriateness. Should students in their freshman year be engaging in acts that are primarily seen as adult in nature? And should we be subjected to having to see it while on our way to biology? Choosing to be revolted and disturbed is certainly an option, or instead we could simply carry on with our day and mind our own business, which honestly sounds like a lot less of a headache.

High school is an era of your life in which you start maturing and discovering how you experience romance and sexuality— both a crucial part of becoming an adult. It’s not the school’s, nor our peers’ place to intervene or control how students express affection, as it’s simply a way of developing into a well-rounded adult.

It’s not anyone else’s business what people choose to do with their bodies, as long as they’re not infringing on those around them. We should keep in mind that in the scheme of things, our peers’ seemingly gross behavior is simply a crucial step for them to become adults. It’s within everyone’s best interest to drop the judgment and let others do with their bodies as they wish.

PDA is inappropriate

by Emmy Goetze

During breaks, passing periods, and lunches, the benches of Sherwood’s Forest serve as a couple hotspot where many couples display their affection—kissing, sitting on each other’s laps and nuzzling each other’s noses.

PDA can make people uncomfortable, be taken too far and can be a distraction from students learning— it should not be allowed in high school altogether.

There is a variety of PDA displayed in high school, some of it appropriate and most of it not. Some forms of PDA are socially acceptable at school, but not many. But some couples cross the line between cute and excessive.

High school is a time where many students encounter new experiences and explore the world of dating. But that doesn’t mean they should publicly display this in the middle of a high school hallway. Displays of affection should be saved for private places when the couple is alone instead of being put on display as students are attempting to make their way to third period.

Another point regarding the appropriateness of PDA is age. Most high schoolers range between the ages of 14 and 18, so most are still very young. So when two 14-year-olds are participating in PDA in a high school hallway, it can easily be seen as inappropriate to other students and teachers.

Some may say that PDA is a way for people to express their romantic relationship with a significant other. But when weighing the two sides of the argument between others’ distaste of PDA and expressing a relationship, others’ distaste is the clear winner. Considering the feelings of the people around you is much more important than wanting to display the fact that you’re in a relationship with someone.

High school should be a place for students to learn and grow. But it’s hard for students to focus on their schoolwork when the couples sitting next to them have their hands all over each other. PDA serves as an immense distraction from the purpose of school—which is to learn, proving further that it is extremely inappropriate in a school environment.

Teenagers who engage in PDA in a school environment trigger feelings of distaste and annoyance for those witnessing it. These feelings can simply be avoided if teenagers decide to save their displays of affection for private places, allowing everyone else to walk to class in peace.