Education

First-Grader Finds Toy Gun, Turns It In, Gets Suspension

I sure hope he learned his lesson.

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Listen!

Pennsylvania first-grader Darin Simak brought a different backpack to school this week, failing to notice the toy gun concealed inside it. When he realized that he had inadvertently brought the weapon—which is not a real weapon at all—to Martin Elementary in New Kensington, he immediately informed his teacher.

Simak was promptly suspended for violating the school district's "zero tolerance" policy against weapons, according to WTAE:

The New Kensington-Arnold School District superintendent said that bringing a toy gun to school violates the district's policy at the highest level and requires a child to be suspended immediately until a meeting can be held to discuss what happened and whether punishment is warranted.

Simak's parents sent him to school the next day anyway, thinking the punishment was too ridiculous to be enforced. But administrators take imaginary firearms very seriously, and refused to let Simak return to his classroom. His father eventually picked him up from school.

School zero tolerance policies require administrators to suspend or expel (and in some cases, arrest), students who break the rules—even inadvertently, in Simak's case. The absurdity of arresting children for harmless mistakes has begun to faze the general public, however, and some lawmakers are pressing districts to revise the policies.

Thankfully, Simak won't face any of the harshest disciplinary possibilities. The school board declined to expel him, and the boy will be allowed to return to school on Monday.

I sure hope he learned his lesson.

Hat tip: Jim Treacher

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  1. Government daycare. YGWYPF.

    1. Well, really, you get what other people pay for.

    2. But they do pay for it. It’s just funnelled through enough layers of bullshit that they don’t have to be treated like consumers, or even humans.

  2. “….requires a child to be suspended immediately until a meeting can be held to discuss what happened and whether punishment is warranted.”

    To think that anyone could come up with such a policy makes my brain bleed.

    1. No, no, no! Its trial first, then the beheading.

  3. You cannot go to school to get a degree in “Common Sense”.

  4. superintendent said that bringing a toy gun to school violates the district’s policy at the highest level and requires a child to be suspended immediately until a meeting can be held

    “The highest level”? Then why don’t these wimps call for *summary execution*?

    1. The highest level

      As opposed to someone who brings an actual gun to school and kills people.

  5. The making of a libertarian.

    Good job, statists.

    1. Probably *several*.

      That’s the only upside to this bullshit.

  6. I sure hope he learned his lesson.

    He learned two very important ones:

    1) Never tell authorities anything.

    2) If you’ve got a big test you aren’t ready for, “accidentally” bring a toy gun to school.

    Now if he could just get a lesson on crafting quality alt-text.

    1. Now if he could just get a lesson on crafting quality alt-text.

      Golden.

      Now if only I could get a lesson on the syntax used to quote things on this forum. A little help?

      1. Surround the quote in <blockquote and </blockquote – then add the missing greater-than signs which the squirrels ate after each tag.

        1. Many thanks. I was just using “quote” (which obviously doesn’t do what I wanted).

  7. I’m curious: what exactly does the policy say?

    This can’t be a policy against weapons, because he didn’t bring a weapon to school.

    If the policy includes “replica” weapons, I’d like to see if this was really a replica or was obviously a toy.

    If it was a toy, does the policy prohibit bringing toys to school? Toy guns? Do they punish somebody who brings, say, a toy horse with automatic suspension?

    1. I’m wondering if the no-tolerance policies grew out of some clever defense ploy involving a gang-banger — that he was “singled out” for having something resembling a gun in his backpack, or something like that — and now they have to suspend all kids with anything remotely gun-related or be accused of racism/classism/othering-isms.

      1. But studies prove that gang-bangers students of color are *still* disproportionately disciplined!

        1. Well, no, it’s not disproportionate.

      2. I’m wondering if the no-tolerance policies grew out of some clever defense ploy…

        You’re giving school admins way too much credit.

        Guns R icky. “Looks like gun” = “Gun” Zero tolerance = no decisions required.

    2. You got me curious, R C, so I searched around a bit and found their Acceptable Use of the Internet policy”, but nothing on the topic at hand.

    3. I’m still waiting for a student to get caught on this stupidity for using a Massachusetts quarter to pay for his milk.

  8. “I sure hope he learned his lesson.”

    And the lesson is, these people don’t really have your best interests at heart. At least an incident like this may cause the kid to become a libertarian in later life.

  9. The lesson to be learned is always know what’s on you and in your car. Don’t drive a friends car unless you know exactly what’s in it. Mistakes and not knowing can get you caught up. And don’t tell on yourself.

    1. The lesson is that government employees never have your best interests in mind.

  10. mens rea?

    1. Not a court, doesn’t have any of those silly limits on punishment.

  11. First Robby says ” police acquitted him.” Now he says “administrators to suspend or expel (and in some cases, arrest), students”

    WTF. cops don’t acquit and college admins don’t arrest.

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