It’s another example of a zero tolerance policy taken to extremes.
A nine-year-old boy at PS 158, in New York City’s Upper East Side, was spotted sticking a yellow post-it note that read “Kick Me” on the back of a fellow fourth grader one day last week.
He was promptly suspended.
Post-It = Infraction 37, Engaging In Bullying Behavior
According to the New York Post,
PS 158 Principal Darryl Alhadeff said the youngster’s prank was “in violation of the Discipline Code and is classified as ‘infraction A37′ — engaging in bullying behavior — and will result in a Principal’s Suspension for a period of two days.”
NYC School Chancellor Defended The Decision
New York Schools Chancellor Cathie Black defended both Alhadeff and the city’s zero tolerance approach to bullying.
“We have very clear guidelines. We need to respect our children. We cannot in any way condone bullying. So we have to take a very firm approach to it.
“It’s . . . about bringing people together,” she added.
Bullying Is A Huge Issue
Care2 has followed the tragic cases of several young people who have committed suicide over the past year, due to bullying and cyberbullying.
The issue of bullying is huge in our schools, and needs to be addressed firmly.
But This Is Taking Zero Tolerance Too Far
However, schools need to make a distinction between aggressive, often violent behavior, and a fourth-grade prank.
What do you think? Did Principal Alhadeff and Chancellor Black act correctly?
Photo Credit: pasukaru 76 via Creative Commons