“Middle school student suspended for touching drug”

by Walter Olson on March 7, 2010

Because touching is tantamount to taking, or something of that sort. “The girl did not bring the prescription drug to her Jeffersonville, IN school, nor did she take it, but she admits that she touched it and in Greater Clark County Schools that is drug possession.” [WAVE3.com]

{ 12 comments }

1 nevins 03.07.10 at 10:36 am

Seems a pretty typical response from those educating our children.
Give people the relative immunities provided by both being a civil employee and the union protections, then add the perverse incentives* to act as literal minded simpletons and the outcome is quite predictable.

*perverse incentives. No one can be fired for cause as long as they follow the rules to a tee. Act like a bloody fool and show astonishingly poor judgement in being unwilling to differentiate bad actors from good actors and there is no punishment beyond a little derision in the press and blogosphere. But this is not to excuse these simpletons from their actions in following the rules, because who do you think makes the rules. Teachers and administrators could go to school boards and present good arguments for rational rules, but they don’t. They like the simplicity of simple rules, bluntly applied, no matter who gets hurt. They don’t care how many kids get crushed in order to maintain their simple and mindless ways.

2 Jonathan Bailey 03.07.10 at 10:52 am

Well said, Nevins. I’ve always seen these “zero-tolerance” policies as serving mainly to absolve school administrators of responsibility for exercising common sense and good judgment. And these are two things that they are supposed be teaching their young charges by providing positive role models.

3 Jay 03.07.10 at 4:13 pm

I know it’s a tired sentiment, but I honestly believe that between zero tolerance rules, over-medication of some students and continuing attempts to save children’s self-esteem (like by not keeping score at games), we’re in real danger of turning out children that lack the drive and motivation to strive for something better than the status quo.

4 Bill Poser 03.07.10 at 4:25 pm

Even more than the obvious injustice involved, incidents like this one do not lead to confidence in the ability of these morons to educate.

5 Bumper 03.07.10 at 5:25 pm

Let’s clarify one thing, zero-tolerance came in to being to protect school administrators from being accused of racial bias. So what we have now is a system that results in equal punishment for bringing a gun to school and drawing a picture of one. The only winners are the administrators who are saved from having to make a decision for which they were supposedly trained and are being paid to make.

Those who can do, those who can’t teach, and those who can’t even teach become school administrators.

Only recently, and mostly thanks to the ire of the internet (OK and more than a few lawsuits), have school systems begun to retrench on this blatant cop-out.

6 Ben Catoe 03.07.10 at 10:49 pm

Well gee, didn’t various school employees touch the pills/bottle as well? Then they are also guilty of drug possession. They should immediately be arrested and their records should reflect that they possessed drugs on school grounds (doesn’t that carry a higher penalty?). If they aren’t guilty of the same crime for the same offense then that is selective enforcement. Hopefully this means they can no longer work around children.

She would have been given the same punishment even if she had reported it immediately? How do people with so little common sense manage to survive to an age where they can achieve tenure?

What is even more amazing is that they either can’t comprehend just how stupid they show themselves to be, or are perfectly willing to show how stupid they are as long as they can keep living in their insulated little worlds. Pitiful.

7 Jim Collins 03.08.10 at 9:00 am

Jay,
Did you ever think that what you said is the objective? Drive out common sense, the desire to excel and then feed them a deit of this socialist, feel good crap. What you are left with is a group of mindless zombies who believe that they need government to take care of them and manage their lives. I give you our current public education system!

8 Heather 03.08.10 at 9:38 am

we’re in real danger of turning out children that lack the drive and motivation to strive for something better than the status quo.

That ship has already sunk.

9 Mark Biggar 03.08.10 at 11:14 am

Not4 that by these rules any student can get any other student suspended, by just saying “here catch” and tossing them a pill. Or even better shut the whole school down by stuffing a pill through the louvers of every locker on campus.

It’s no wonder that student lack respect for school authorities when they act like such morons.

10 Tom 03.08.10 at 12:39 pm

Ben, well said. The story about a person being added to a sex offenders list in California merely by being accused, then not being able to be removed over a year after a trial proved otherwise, had a similar solution. Hopefully the child’s parents will pursue this avenue. And please don’t whine about good teachers losing their jobs if that happens to them; good teachers would speak up about this and not let it get that far.

11 mojo 03.08.10 at 4:35 pm

“Zero Tolerance” is the abdication of judgment, pure and simple, and should be grounds for firing whatever idiot proposes it.

12 Paul 03.08.10 at 4:44 pm

Anyone interested? The following is a link to the Greater Calrk County School website listing school board members and contact information if you want to voice some support for this girl.

http://www.gcs.k12.in.us/content.asp?q_areaprimaryid=5

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