Thursday, September 13, 2007

Let the Child back on the Bus

Two weeks? What happened to a one- and three-day suspensions? Now this kindergartner is being placed in a situation that will jeopardize his attendance. The boy did wrong. He needs to learn his lesson. The school system/bus company should make the child ride behind the bus driver for the next two weeks. Or the rest of the school year. Then, he could be easily monitored.

A child of five lives in the moment and has difficulty comprehending long-term consequences. Two weeks off the bus won’t change the misbehaving. Two weeks is forever to a child. It’s too harsh.

The brunt of the punishment should involve parent-to-child communication, and if that doesn’t work, the school system should step in. In the end, the parents are being punished for this boy’s behavior and will have great difficulty getting their child to school since they both work in Marion County.

We know there are discipline procedures set by the school system and bus company to protect the students as well as the businesses. But each situation should also be evaluated for its seriousness and then a determination should be made. The child did not hurt another child. He did not bring drugs or a weapon to school. He played a prank. It was childish and stupid. But he is a child. The punishment does not fit the crime. It is an overreaction and needs to be reconsidered.

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