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Ohio student points finger like gun, is suspended

Published: March 4, 2014 9:55 AM

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) -- A central Ohio principal says she suspended a 10-year-old boy from school for three days for pretending his finger was a gun and pointing it at another student's head.

The boy's father says it's the adults who are acting childish for suspending the boy from Devonshire Alternative Elementary School in Columbus last week.

The fifth-grader said he was "just playing around." But district spokesman Jeff Warner told The Columbus Dispatch (http://bit.ly/1jO1rL7 ) that Devonshire Principal Patricia Price has warned students about pretend gun play numerous times this year, and everyone should know the rules by now. He said warnings have been included in three newsletters sent home with kids.

Warner says the boy put his finger to the side of the other student's head and pretended to shoot "kind of execution style."

"The kids were told, 'If you don't stop doing this type of stuff, there would be consequences,'" Warner said. "It's just been escalating."

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The boy's father said no one felt threatened. The other student didn't see it happen, but a teacher witnessed it.

"I was just playing around," said the fifth-grader, who had never been in trouble before. "People play around like this a lot at my school."

Since zero-tolerance policies were adopted following school shootings around the country, Columbus schools have disciplined students for violations including firing a Nerf foam-dart gun at school. A similar policy was cited last year when a Maryland school suspended a 7-year-old boy who had chewed a Pop-Tart into a gun shape.


Information from: The Columbus Dispatch, http://www.dispatch.com

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whizzard Mar 5, 2014 9:51 AM

Well, maybe if they didn't show that kind of stuff on TV to a child who isn't monitored by an adult at the time he sees it, this kind of thing wouldn't occur.  The child is conditioned to accept those things as "everybody does it".  So how can you persecute the child for an accepted visual on TV?  It wouldn't matter how many times you tell them it is inappropriate when it is reinforced on TV that it is appropriate behaviour?

Either control what your child watches or explain to them why a certian behaviour should be considered inappropriate when they do see it.  But it occurs in cartoons, sitcoms and everything else out there that even adults are seeing a blurred line as to what is and isn't appropriate.

So how does a child really believe what is right or what is wrong?

Until we cure media, it will be difficult to control or eliminate these situations.  Until then, media is conditioning our children and our society to be the society it is.

And when we do, then we are censoring.  How do we get out of this mess:?


Think about it.

How do we draw the line.  I've got nothing.

Martin Fleming