Connecticut eighth grader Patrick Abbazia attended classes wrapped in duct tape Friday morning to protest his East Shore Midddle School’s “no touching” policy.

Earlier in the week, East Shore principal Catherine Williams sent home a letter telling parents that “physical contact is prohibited to keep all students safe in the learning environment.” The announcement was prompted by an incident in which a student required medical attention after being kicked in the groin, but the letter specifically banned “hugging” and “horseplay” as well.

Contacted by the Connecticut Post, Williams said she was “only concerned about unsafe behaviors,”  but Abbazia claimed teachers had told him that high-fives and pats on the back were out of bounds as well. Superintendent of Schools Harvey Polansky told the paper that principals would use their discretion in interpreting the policy. 

Abbazia had a friend tape his torso at the shoulders and elbows while he was waiting for the school bus, and kept the tape on until fourth period, just after noon. School officials called his father in for a conference, telling him that Patrick had misunderstood the policy.

The elder Abbazia told a reporter that he supported his son’s actions. “He is using his freedom as an American citizen to protest,” he said. “Those are the kind of people who get ahead in the world.”