Thursday, September 21, 2006

A Lesson Taught

A child was suspended for 10 days in Missouri for binging a squirt gun to school. The problem is the school has a policy against guns. Even toy guns. It's a pretty clear situation:
The school district said it is all policy -- one that the school told students and parents about at the start of the year.

"We regret that this happened. My feeling is that by not giving any exceptions, this young man will not bring a toy gun to school again," [school district's Phyllis] Budesheim said.

The school district said that the incident should be a reminder to parents to check their children's backpacks before they go to school.

Yes he was 6 years old. Yes, It's obviously a toy. But you break a district policy
that's fairly unambiguous, you abide by the consequences. But mom doesn't seem to understand what that means.

"I asked her, 'You're going to suspend my son for 10 days for this? He cannot harm a soul with this,'" said Danielle Womack, whose son, Tawann Caskey, was suspended from Milton Moore Elementary School in Kansas City.

I don't think she realizes that's not the point. The point is it was against the rules. And rules need to be enforced evenly for them to be effective. Really, how hard can it be to check a 6 year old's backpack?

If this were all it was, there really wouldn't be a story. Boy breaks rules, boy gets punished. Big deal. But mom had to go appeal to the district board. Of course, you think, the board upheld the policy that it set.

Hahahaha! How... quiant of you.

Of course not. They rescinded the suspension, and he's back in school consequence free. So I guess the policy is no longer enforced. But wait...

The school district stands by its policy -- automatic suspension for bringing any toy to school that looks like a weapon.

Uh, no. Obviously they don't stand by that policy. This case is evidence of that.

Usually, a child is punished as reinforcement or as an opportunity to learn a lesson. Well, this young boy learned a lesson all right. He learned that rules don't apply and if you don't like the results of your actions, simply complain loud enough and they go away.