Posts Tagged ‘Girl suspended for bringing butter knife to school.’

Policy schmolicy. My extremist comments are below the article.

DM – A 13-year-old girl caught using a butter knife to cut a piece of fruit in her middle school cafeteria has been suspended according to her outraged mother who says the punishment goes too far. Morgan LaPlaume of Wamsutta Middle School in Attleboro, Massachusetts says the braces on her teeth prevent her from biting through whole fruit so she brought in the round-tipped knife for help. She said she never imagined it would lead to the vice principal escorting her to his office and a one-day suspension. ‘As we were walking to his office I asked him and he said we you are not allowed to have knives in school and I said, “I was using it to cut my pear, I wasn’t using to it harm any other student” and he said “I know but it’s the policy,”‘ Morgan told FOX25. ‘It’s a butter knife. She has braces. She was cutting her pear. There is no intent at all there,’ added her mother, Melissa LaPlaume. But according to the school’s student handbook, signed at the beginning of the year by all parents and guardians, they have a zero-tolerance policy on knives. ‘I understand the policy but I think that every child needs to be looked at individually,’ Mrs LaPlaume said. ‘And every case is different. Not every child is the same. In Morgan’s case I believe she should have just been given a verbal warning,’ she said.

I have a really radical idea. How about taking Morgan aside and saying:

Honey, I know you had no intention of breaking the rules, but you’re not supposed to have any type of knife in school. Come down to the office and we’ll cut your fruit for you. Then I’ll return your butter knife before you leave today.”

Shocking and groundbreaking idea, I know. Good grief.

In addition, if a butter knife is a weapon, what about pencils? Pens? Rulers? Dry Erase Markers? Protractors? Hell, you could kill a horse with one of those Math Compasses.

The truth is that these Zero Tolerance policies are a joke and a crutch for administrators to turn to when they don’t have the guts to make a decision. Kids and situations are not all the same and should be treated and dealt with individually and independently of each other. End of story.

Why is that so hard to understand?