Zero Tolerance School Policies

The headline reads:

10-year-old boy charged with assault for injuring classmate in dodgeball-like game

Seriously!? You’re going to charge a 10 year old with aggravated assault because he hit another boy with a ball … in a game where the object is to hit someone with the ball!? Apparently, the boy that was hit has a medical condition that makes head injuries especially dangerous. Then why the fuck was he playing the game!?

Here’s a little snippet from the article:

The mother of the boy hit by the ball told WXYZ that her son suffered a black eye and had a bruise on his nose. She said her son had been hit twice before in the face with a ball and the incident in April was the final straw. “I tried not to let it get to this point,” the mother said, adding that she was worried for her son’s safety.

NOW you’re worried for his safety! If he has a medical condition, why didn’t you tell him he couldn’t play anymore after the first time it happened. I understand you don’t want to baby the kid and ostracize him by not letting him play with his friends but come on! I am no fan of unsolicited parental advice but in this case … I’ll make an exception. If you’re son has a medical condition … then he shouldn’t be playing sports like this!

Then there is the ridiculous school district officials. After the incident, they suspended him for one day. That seems reasonable to me to show the young man what he did was not acceptable. The mother of the boy thought that was the end of her son’s punishment also. Then a couple days later, she receives a call from the juvenile court that her son was being charged with aggravated assault! The school officials contacted the authorities over a playground incident!

What happened to bringing the kid into the principal’s office and making him apologize to the other boy. Make them shake hands and then tell him not to do it again … or else there will be severe consequences? Where is the boys will be boys attitude? I understand once they hit teenage years that probably doesn’t work anymore … but he’s 10!

The zero tolerance policy that schools have adopted is ridiculous! How did it come to this? In my opinion, the parents are to blame. Schools were allowed to handle situations like this when I was growing up and the parents backed the school’s decision. Even if the parent thought it was ridiculous, they’d tell their kid “Well, this is what happens … so don’t do it again!” Now you have helicopter parents that come in and defend their children at all costs and threaten to sue the school district. The schools are just too scared of being sued, so they pass something like this off to the authorities so they don’t have to deal with any repercussions.

Then there’s the assistant prosecuting attorney who looked at the case and decided there was enough evidence to charge the boy with aggravated assault. Even if there was … do you really need to!? There aren’t more pressing things to prosecute in your county? It’s amazing to me that not one person involved in this case didn’t stop and say “This has gone too far.”

But that’s the problem with the world today. Everybody is over-sensitive and common sense has disappeared. Not to mention that the legal system has become a joke that you can sue people for anything. Even if it seems like a ridiculous case on it’s face. Do you trust the system to come to a reasonable outcome? A perfect example is if a burglar hurts himself while robbing you, he can sue you for damages. Don’t believe me? Check it out yourself:

I understand that schools have a lot to worry about in today’s world, like school shootings and drugs. But is it too much to ask to look at things on a case by case basis instead of zero tolerance … and realize that some things don’t need to rise to a level that the authorities get involved. We don’t need to charge a kindergartner with sexual assault for kissing a little girl. Just like we don’t need this little boy brought up on criminal charges over a dodgeball injury. Lucky for him … the prosecutor was feeling nice and the charges were finally dismissed. How a school yard incident reached it’s way to that level is beyond me.