The great parenting debate - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

The great parenting debate

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CEDAR FALLS (KWWL) - Would you let your young children go to somewhere like a park by themselves?

It's something that was very common generations prior, but now things are different.

A Maryland couple is being charged with neglect after letting their children walk to a park over a mile away from their home completely unattended.

The mother says she's just doing what her parents let her do just one generation ago, and she calls it free-range parenting.

Her argument is sparking a lot of controversy, but she has a point.

"I walked to school alone when I was in first grade," says Iowa parent Cindee Zuck.

She says even though she was given that freedom when she was young, she won't let her children do the same.

"She won't ever do it," says Zuck.

She isn't alone.

Many believe letting children roam on their own is too dangerous.

"Any type of extreme parenting is not such a good thing," says social worker Robert Boezinger.

He says if parents do opt to be free range, they still need to make their children's safety a top priority.

"Dialing 911, knowing the difference between a predator and police officer. They needed to be educated on those responsibilities."

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