Volunteer Santas in England have been banned from coming into contact with youngsters this Christmas.
The Telegraph reports on how many British schools have decided to err on the side of caution, telling parents who have offered to play the role of Santa that they cannot let youngster sit on their lap and cannot be left alone with them.
The strict rules are being put in place because those playing Father Christmas are no longer required to pass Criminal Records Bureau checks. Government guidelines state that those who have not had such a check should not be left unsupervised with schoolkids.
The general secretary of the National Association of Head Teachers, Russell Hobby, said many members had decided it was best if Father Christmases simply avoided all physical contact.
"The climate we work in, and the risks of getting it wrong, mean many school leaders err on the side of caution," Mr Hobby said.
A spokesman for Britain's Department of Education said youngsters could sit on Santa's knee if their parents were asked first and were "completely comfortable" with the situation.
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