Why Now?
Friday, May 06, 2005
  Zero Tolerance
Student suspended over call from mom in Iraq. A 17-year-old received a 10-day suspension from his high school in Columbus, Georgia for refusing to hang up his cell phone when classes restarted after the lunch period. The student was talking to his mother who was calling from her station in Iraq.

Fort Benning, one of the largest US Army bases and the home of the 82nd Airborne Division, is located beside Columbus, Georgia and many of the students in the school system have parents on active duty with the military.

Anyone who would order that boy to hang up on what might be the last time he ever talked to his mother because of a "school rule", and then gave him a suspension when he refused, has no business in education of any kind.

Their claim that they went easy on him and didn't have him arrested is several horizons beyond the pale. The kid's mother is serving in a war zone, and any educator who lacks the humanity to deal with that needs to be removed.

Update: School authorities have decided to reduce the penalty to a three day suspension following massive protests against their original decision. I would suggest sending the people involved to Baghdad to set up a base education center.


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