8th Grader Suspended For Wearing Rosary Beads
In another example of a school’s zero tolerance policy gone awry, an 8th grade student at Hodges Bend Middle School in Houston, Texas, has been suspended for refusing to take off her rosary beads.
Rosary In Memory Of Her Grandmother
According to the student, Jonae Devlin, she wears the beads as a tribute to her late grandmother, a devout Catholic. Devlin told local TV station khou.com, “It reminds me of all the love she had for me. It makes me feel like she’s with me all the time.”
The student dress code prohibits openly wearing a rosary because it can be interpreted as a sign of gang involvement. Jonae and her mother, Sherell Johnson said they did not know of the policy, but school officials insist they held a series of seminars about the dress code at the beginning of the school year, and are standing by their decision.
Not Everyone Wearing A Rosary Is A Gang Member
And, as Ms. Devlin pointed out, “Everyone who wears a rosary is not in a gang.”
But there’s something about those rosary beads that school officials just don’t like. Last September I wrote here about the case of 13-year-old Raymond Hosier, sent home from his middle school in Schenectady, New York, for the same offense.
In his case, mom took the issue to court, and a federal judge ordered the school to reinstate the boy immediately.
School Adminstrators Don’t Like Rosary Beads
There was also a 14-year-old boy in Haverstraw, New York, who was suspended for a day for the same offence last February, and a Dallas, Texas, high school student who was asked to remove rosary beads in September, 2008.
Is this a good way to treat students?
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