Zero Tolerance or Zero Common Sense?

rdowns

macrumors Penryn
Original poster
Jul 11, 2003
27,345
12,409
I think zero tolerance policies are zero common sense. This is friggin' ridiculous.

Link


A Delaware first-grader who wanted to eat lunch at school with his favorite camping utensil, a combination of folding fork, knife and spoon, now faces 45 days in the district's alternative school for troublemakers…

Zachary was ordered to spend 45 days at the Douglass School, an alternative school for children who violate the district's code of conduct. Students there participate in behavior modification programs and receive counseling.
 

jemeinc

macrumors 6502a
Feb 14, 2004
771
0
South Jersey
I've always hated zero tolerance policies because I feel it's just an excuse for people to not have to use their brains & figure out the right course of action for a given set of circumstances.. While I suppose I can understand zero-tolerance policies in theory the problems immediately arise the second something isn't clearly black & white.. Let's face it, most things in life aren't that black & white- they're grey.. It's for those situations (most IMO) where zero tolerance really fails..
 

eawmp1

macrumors 601
Feb 19, 2008
4,130
5
FL
Zero tolerance = zero thought = zero personal resposibility = zero humanity
 

bruinsrme

macrumors 604
Oct 26, 2008
6,551
2,274
yep.
My son was suspended because someone told a teacher that he was going to cut up his family and boil them.
First off my son is far too lazy to ever carry out something like that.
Secondly we don't have a pot or vat big enough for a famliy larger than 2 adults and a small child.

When my wife went into talk to the principal, he was unable to confirm if my son actually said it, the witness was not sure what was really said, and the witness wasn't sure who actually said what. Police did the interrogation with the parents present.
But the zero tolerance meant someone was getting suspended. Unfortunately that was my son.
 

iOrlando

macrumors 68000
Jul 20, 2008
1,813
1
if i brought a knife into school when i was in elementary school i would be sent to the principals office. (mainly for safety issues) From that point forward, decisions are often made solely by the principal. In some school districts, principals are told to keep suspensions and "noise" down and therefore relatively few students are sent home or disciplined. This might be to meet a certain quota issued by the school district (for example school districts might receive more grant money if suspensions are low etc.). While other school districts may be very strict and will discipline the principal for anything that wasn't disciplined correctly.

I am not familiar with that school district in Delaware, but from the sounds of it, I think they must have a very high problem with behavioral issues if they have a structure for sending students to another school to get specific discipline treatments.

and as someone else said, if the family had a good lawyer, the kid would be back in his class already. School districts hate bad press and will do anything to avoid it.
 

mscriv

macrumors 601
Aug 14, 2008
4,911
586
Dallas, Texas
Zero tolerance in and of itself is okay even though it is the epitome of over-reaction. The problem is in the application of zero tolerance. I'm assuming in this situation the camping equipment was classified as a weapon (knife) and thus the policy was used. Misapplication in my opinion.
 

Melrose

Suspended
Dec 12, 2007
7,807
392
Idiots. :rolleyes:

This is a case where the letter of the law goes overboard. You can't regulate principles so they just over-enforce what laws they have.
 

Ttownbeast

macrumors 65816
May 10, 2009
1,135
0
It lacks any common sense, the child could have just as easily stabbed or slashed a classmate with a spork or a tooth pick--Now that I've said that they'll probably have to remove those from lunchrooms and switch to finger foods--better yet let em starve right?
 

amd4me

macrumors 6502
Nov 19, 2006
364
0
It lacks any common sense, the child could have just as easily stabbed or slashed a classmate with a spork or a tooth pick--Now that I've said that they'll probably have to remove those from lunchrooms and switch to finger foods--better yet let em starve right?
First they ban peanut butter and now they ban fun. Whats next? Eating paste?
 

johnrs

macrumors 6502a
Jul 7, 2008
520
1
Nottingham - UK
i weep for the future. Whats the matter with people today

Its like some schools in the UK that ban sports day because competition is not healthy and everyone has to win.

What worries me is when our kids grow up they wont be prepared for how competitive real life is and how ****** it can be..
 

Tower-Union

macrumors 6502
May 6, 2009
445
18
Best thing you can do is to try and prepare your kids yourself, teach them how things are and how to behave.

Also, stand up for them! I had a co-worker who's son was going to be expelled for fighting - after getting jumped from behind by a bully (and winning I might add :D). The school even admitted it was an unprovoked attack, but still felt the need to expell him! :eek: Thankfully his father (my co-worker) had a little chat with them and pointed out that school policy does NOT overrule one's right to defend themselves with reasonable force, and once he started threatening lawyers and media coverage they changed their tune real quick :)
 

Zombie Acorn

macrumors 65816
Feb 2, 2009
1,301
9,062
Toronto, Ontario
Best thing you can do is to try and prepare your kids yourself, teach them how things are and how to behave.

Also, stand up for them! I had a co-worker who's son was going to be expelled for fighting - after getting jumped from behind by a bully (and winning I might add :D). The school even admitted it was an unprovoked attack, but still felt the need to expell him! :eek: Thankfully his father (my co-worker) had a little chat with them and pointed out that school policy does NOT overrule one's right to defend themselves with reasonable force, and once he started threatening lawyers and media coverage they changed their tune real quick :)
It must suck to be a kid these days. My parents taught me to not start a fight, but if someone else does to beat the hell out of them. :) That being said I have received ISS because of fighting when I was attacked and won, my parents didn't care, and it wasn't that big of a deal to sit in a room and get all of my homework done early (they gave us all of our assignments for the week).
 

GFLPraxis

macrumors 604
Mar 17, 2004
7,091
404
Zero tolerance is incredibly stupid.

I've seen kids be suspended because another kid was physically picking on him, and zero-tolerance policies determine that both kids should be suspended if a physical confrontation occurs, even if one kid was clearly only defending himself.

Zero tolerance for weapons I understand (though, the policy should not be written in stone, because cases like this occur; I'm referring to switchblades, guns, etc, not swiss army knives), but the policy extends way too far.

Also, stand up for them! I had a co-worker who's son was going to be expelled for fighting - after getting jumped from behind by a bully (and winning I might add :D). The school even admitted it was an unprovoked attack, but still felt the need to expell him! :eek: Thankfully his father (my co-worker) had a little chat with them and pointed out that school policy does NOT overrule one's right to defend themselves with reasonable force, and once he started threatening lawyers and media coverage they changed their tune real quick :)
Almost this exact same story happened to me in middle school.
 

rdowns

macrumors Penryn
Original poster
Jul 11, 2003
27,345
12,409
I agree. It must really suck being a kid with all these idiotic rules and PC BS.
 

AngryApple

macrumors 6502
Dec 25, 2008
342
0
My school has a zero tolerance rule on bullying. It is never enforced unless someone tells a teacher which rarely happens because teachers rudely say to get over most of the time. Last year, I posted a bulletin on MySpace about a teacher. Nothing bad was in it. Just how annoying and stupid I think she. That teacher was particularly bad. She sat on her ass all day shopping online (she would ask students if it was cute or not) and giving worksheets out. These two kids told on me to get back at me for something I did to them in 5th grade and I ended up with three days ISS. At my school, they don't give us work during ISS. You sit there starring at the wall. The entire time. Then go home and do the work.
 

Unspoken Demise

macrumors 68040
Apr 16, 2009
3,687
0
>9,000
My school has a zero tolerance rule on bullying. It is never enforced unless someone tells a teacher which rarely happens because teachers rudely say to get over most of the time. Last year, I posted a bulletin on MySpace about a teacher. Nothing bad was in it. Just how annoying and stupid I think she. That teacher was particularly bad. She sat on her ass all day shopping online (she would ask students if it was cute or not) and giving worksheets out. These two kids told on me to get back at me for something I did to them in 5th grade and I ended up with three days ISS. At my school, they don't give us work during ISS. You sit there starring at the wall. The entire time. Then go home and do the work.
My family's attorney would be so far up that school's ass if my comment on a social networking site led to ramifications at school.

Sucks that happened man.
 

velocityg4

macrumors 601
Dec 19, 2004
4,602
1,185
Georgia
I know when I was that age the person in the cafeteria would have just taken me to the office and the principal would have a little chat. To a kid that would already be petrified by having a few minutes to think of possible punishments.:p

I wonder if private schools are so strict. Or do they have more common sense.
 

Bennieboy©

macrumors 65816
Jan 15, 2009
1,277
1
england
zero tolerance is stupid, always discounting the minoritys capacity for intelligence against the majoritys ignorant ways

everything to make the thought and evaluation process dumbed down and eventually obsolete :mad: