I was taught pottery by a sadist who wouldn't let us use bats, while at the same time demanding super thin pots. The good thing about that was that the beginner learns new skills and a better feel for the clay. With practice there are a lot of pots that you can lift off the wheel head without drying it with heat and while still sloppy wet and ways to sort of plop it down so that it springs back into shape. This is not a bad skill for a beginner to develop. Sort of like it's a good idea to make beginners learn to tap on center to trim. When I taught in Denver, I copied my teacher and no bats were used in the beginner's class, in other classes they were used if absolutely necessary for bowls shapes. I much rather use a heat gun for a few seconds to a couple of minutes to lift a ready to finish pot (handle, foot) than mess with bats and covering things with plastic. Almost the only use I have for bats is my 30 inch bats that I use to trim large bows because my wheel head isn't big enough.