Is this in Brampton, Ontario?
A principal there recently banned any kind of ball on school premises ("too dangerous"). There's no way the rule will stick."
Actually it was the Brampton thing that caused me to bring it up, but we're nowhere near there. My boss then informed me of the deal at his kid's school. Sounds like it's been that way for a while. I don't know all the details. It sounded like maybe balls are allowed in gym and just not at recess, but I'm really not sure.
On a related note, I do the Big Brothers thing and my little guy goes to a completely different school where there is a no touching rule. Period. Like not even tag. So the ball thing, ridiculous as it is, becomes a bit more credible. Sucks for these kids, man.
We never played much dodgeball, but I'm from Toronto and when I was in grade 7&8 we used to play british bulldog. For those of you who don't know what that is, you have one kid trying to catch and tackle any of the players, who are attempting to run from one side of the field to the other. upon being tackled a player becomes an accomplice, and it continues until one kid remains- this player becomes the new bulldog.
For kids who grew out without much organized football or rugby in their lives, british bulldog at lunch was the easiest way for kids that age (remember, boys at that age are just starting puberty, with the associated extreme hormonal metamorphosis) to do violence unto each other in relative safety (adults around, no intention of permanent injury, etc).
Not all the schools forbid fun, don't worry.