Friday, May 06, 2005

Mom Calls From Iraq, Son Gets Kicked out of School

A Columbus, Georgia high school student has been suspended for becoming upset after a teacher asked him to stop talking on the phone with his mother, a soldier in Iraq.

Students are not allowed to use their cell phones during school hours and the teen apparently was belligerent when the teacher took him to the office for refusing to hang up his phone. Can you blame him? It’s not everyday that soldiers get to call home from Iraq. The teacher was way out of line for insisting the call end once the student explained why he was on the phone.

Unless the student was violent in his reaction (and the reports don’t say that he was), there is no sense in suspending him. Instead, how about readdressing the no phone call rule and creating an exception for students with family serving overseas. It’s hard enough to have your mother be away in a dangerous country—the last thing this boy needs is to be kicked out of school.

UPDATE: The Moderate Voice has great coverage on this story with links to other commentary.

The high school in questions is Spencer High School. You can find their contact info here.

UPDATE II: Michelle Malkin is reporting:
When a teacher tried to grab the boy's phone, the call was disconnected. School staff wouldn't let the student answer the phone when the mom tried to call back. He cursed and was disciplined for his disorderly behavior. The boy acknowledges his reaction was wrong.

Yeah, but he's 17 and can be forgiven for acting juevnile, particularly under these circumstances. What's the school's excuse? They should be the ones admitting error.

UPDATE III: See our post here.


At 3:57 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I completely and absolutely agree that the boy should have been allowed to finish his call with his Mom, and the teacher - who is obviously on a power trip - should be repremanded instead. Who could blame the child for becoming beligerant? Sunday is Mother's Day for heaven's sake!!

At 4:28 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The mother was calling from Iraq! Has this teacher any common sense? How about the principal or whoever it was that suspended the boy? I'm sure glad my kids don't go to school there! I agree with the comment above... the teacher is on a power trip. There would be fewer problems in schools if teachers(and parents) treated kids as they'd like to be treated.

At 4:40 PM, Anonymous Steve Bridge, California said...

Anyone know the phone number for the school?

At 4:42 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Unless this student has had a history of recieving phone calls (which would have had to have been daily) these people need to shut up. Just another example of a whole hearted douche bag. As they say.... teacher, "here's your sign."

At 5:18 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is an example of what happens when rules are setup that do not allow for exceptions or allow adults to use their judgement or common sense to make exceptions when necessary.

Who knows how often the mother gets to call. Who knows when a call will be her last (soldiers are still being killed in Iraq).

The student was wrong when he used profanity but given his mother's circumstances how many of us wouldn't have reacted much the same way. What amazes me is the suspension was in lieu of his being arrested! Isn't it strange they can make an exception to the rules when it comes to his being arrested but couldn't do so to allow him to talk to his mother stationed in Iraq?

At 6:11 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

As a wife, mother of 3 sons, and a successful business woman I am appalled at the actions of the teacher. Had I been in a business meeting and received a cell call of this importance I would have left the room and taken the call. My boss would have thought nothing of it because he respects me enough to know I would only take a call during a meeting if were very important. He trusts my judgement. However, had he followed me out and grabed my phone you can be sure he would have received an ear full of the most vulgar language imaginable! This teacher was indeed on a power trip.

Because this 17 yr old young man is a student he is assumed guilty. It is assumed he is breaking the rules for the hell of it and using poor judgement. Had the teacher simply apologized and backed off he would have set a better example for the young man. Instead the teacher invaded his space, privacy, and essientially assulted the student by grabing the phone. So much for adult leadership.

At 6:53 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is outrageous. The kid was on his lunch period. My daughter's school has the same policy and I was at the WTC for 9/11 - if her school had blocked a phone call from me, I would have been at the school on 9/12 and arrested for decking the principal.

At 9:19 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

the school is a disgrace. all these letters should be sent to the school. with mother's day coming and his dad was killed when he was five. the school and the teacher were way out of line. Do they understand his mom is over there and protecting our country in a wild dangerous country which does not care for human life? the teacher must have a real ego to have done this. I would have been angry also. and the superintendent had the gall to say they could have had him arrested??????

At 4:42 AM, Anonymous Bob M said...

I don't blame the kid at all for being belligerant. They have no right at all to confiscate cell phones because they are private property, all they can do is ask that people not use them in the middle of class. Lunch is not a class, therefore you can call anybody you want at lunch, forget what fascist-wannabe teachers say. Take it from someone who graduated HS in 2002, I lived through "zero-tolerance" and it's a crock of bullshit. I can tell you from my own experience that all high school teachers are on a power trip. If it had been me in this kid's place, I would have beat the shit out of the teacher, left the school, then called my mom back. When the cops came after me, I'd just get in my car (assuming he drives) and drive home, ignore the cops, and go in my house and go to bed. If the cops try to force themselves on me, I'd just tell them to go away and leave me alone.


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