An Ohio dad has become a viral video star after he posted footage of himself making his ten-year-old daughter walk five miles to school in freezing temperatures, KABC-TV (Los Angeles) is reporting.
Matt Cox says that when his 10-year-old daughter, Kirsten, got a three-day suspension for bullying another student, he needed to nip that in the bud.
The circumstances of the young girl’s suspension are unclear — as public schools generally do not reveal students’ personal information to the media — and Cox isn’t saying much beyond what he’s said in the video. It remains unclear, for example, if she was suspended from riding the school bus because she bullied another student on the bus, or if she was given an in-school suspension for another reason.
Nevertheless, Cox decided that the best way to drive home the lesson was to make his daughter walk to school instead of taking the bus. That means a five-mile walk each way — which means having to get up for school even earlier, and that she has less time for play when she gets home. And since this is Ohio and it’s December, her walk may bring her into contact with freezing temperatures.
“This is my small way of trying to stop it in my household. Parents need to hold their kids accountable.”
Cox, who says, via the Houston Chronicle, that it was the second time that Kirsten had gotten into trouble at school this year for bullying, also filmed the girl’s punishment — and posted it online.
The video has since gone viral, getting over 15 million views and having been shared more than 338,000 times.
And, as in all viral parenting videos, some parents are on board with how Cox punished his daughter — while others think it might have been too much.
For example, over on Twitter, user @spacebtwen1013 called Cox a “hero.”
“Matt Cox is a hero. Children shouldn’t bully and mad props for correcting this daughter for bullying. A five mile walk in the cold gave her plenty of time to think about her actions.”
Cox, for his part, says he’d do it all over again if he had to.
“I just want the kids to know that words truly do hurt. They cut very deep and have lasting effects. I hope that parents hold their kids accountable.”
As for Kirsten, she says that she’s learned her lesson.