by Renée Smith/j&R Tutoring Academy of Indiana
The public schools’ PC police were at it again last week! Two little boys were suspended from their respective schools – one for nibbling a Pop-Tart into the shape of a gun, and the other for putting little plastic army men on cupcakes! His mother made the cupcakes for his class and he put the men on them. Of course, the school dumped the sweet treats in the garbage!

In one situation the school made counselors available for the children who may have been traumatized by the act! As much as I have tried, I cannot take either situation seriously. (Okay, I didn’t try that hard!) With all the real concerns in our public schools, why are teachers, counselors and administrators wasting time on totally innocuous situations?

I wonder if the men now serving in Afghanistan or the veterans who stormed Normandy would have needed counselors because of cupcake or Pop-Tart trauma?

Would either boy garner as much attention (by the school) if he were struggling in reading or math? Perhaps . . . but I doubt it.

I had planned to add the final piece in my “when to be concerned” series of blogs today, but these two episodes just blew my mind! I feel the need to vent!

If a second grade boy is suspended from school for two days for his Pop-Tart crime, what are they going to do if he actually does something harmful? How are our children going to learn the difference between good and bad acts when schools adhere to these inane policies?

I watched an interview with the Pop-Tart criminal, who was about seven. He was quite well spoken and genuinely perplexed by what had happened! How does a parent make sense of the school’s action? Do we really want our schools making value judgments about our children based on how they bite into foods?

Suspending seven-year-olds will not prevent a shooting rampage down the road. Our schools should be encouraging our children to develop the skills that will help them make sound decisions. I wonder what discipline the school enacts if a seven-year old intentionally hits and injures another student?

Schools are social institutions and there must be rules of behavior; however, “the punishment should fit the crime!”

Parents, please check the discipline procedure at your child’s school. If it does not differentiate among various acts of misbehavior, work with them to bring about change. Children should not be victimized by a system unwilling – or afraid – to make distinctions in less than stellar behavior!

I feel better! Back to the final installment of “when to be concerned” next time!