Skip to comments.First-Grader Suspended Over Plastic Squirt Gun
Posted on 09/20/2006 4:44:30 AM PDT by jmq
First-Grader Suspended Over Plastic Squirt Gun School District Says Policy Prohibits Exceptions
POSTED: 3:50 pm CDT September 19, 2006 UPDATED: 5:01 pm CDT September 19, 2006 Email This Story | Print This Story Sign Up for Breaking News Alerts KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- A mother is angry that her first-grader was suspended from school over a plastic toy gun.
"I asked her, 'You're going to suspend my son for 10 days for this? He cannot harm a soul with this,'" said Danielle Womack, whose son, Tawann Caskey, was suspended from Milton Moore Elementary School.
KMBC's Natalie Moultrie reported that Tawann was suspended over a 2-inch plastic squirt gun.
"She told me it's a weapon, a little girl saw it and reported to a teacher that he had a weapon," Womack said.
According to Kansas City, Mo., School District policy, the squirt gun is a simulated weapon and a class IV, which is the most serious school offense. Moultrie reported that principals have no discretion in cases like Tawaan's. It is an automatic 10-day suspension.
"We ask our principals for safety of students and staff, and we do follow the code of conduct and do not give exceptions to Class IV offenses. We take it very seriously," the school district's Phyllis Budesheim said.
Moultrie reported that the incident will stay on Tawann's school record. But Womack said her son does not understand why he's not in school.
"I think this could have been resolved in a different way. It's wrong to bring it school, but come on, he's 6 years old. This would not hurt a soul," Womack said.
The school district said it is all policy -- one that the school told students and parents about at the start of the year.
"We regret that this happened. My feeling is that by not giving any exceptions, this young man will not bring a toy gun to school again," Budesheim said.
The school district said that the incident should be a reminder to parents to check their children's backpacks before they go to school.
Moultrie reported that Womack is waiting to state her case before a school district hearing Wednesday morning.
Yep, you are so right. They create the appearance of doing something, dare I say the illusion, and then when things go horribly wrong, they can shrug and say, "I had no choice - the rules didn't give any leeway" (I was only following orders - hmmm, where have I heard that before)...
Idiot. My feeling is that by suspending this first grader for 10 days, they've significantly decreased his chances of graduating from high school.
IT. IS. A. TOY. IT. IS. NOT. A. GUN.
The KC school district is run by a bunch of idiots. And I mean that literally, not figuratively. I live in the KC suburbs on the Kansas side. That school district has to be the most screwed up school district in the nation.
.... move on Ken.
I'm having a hard time finding specifics, but this spokesperson, Dr. Phyllis Budesheim, appears to be "Executive Director for School Leadership", whatever the heck that is.
I bet we could use less of it.
Couldn't find contact info on the school system site.
Contacting her would probably be pretty useless, anyway. Going directly to the school board is typically the only way to get any traction, on things like this.
Exactly... everyone's gotta have their PC labels. Sadly, even some here believe he should be suspended for 10 days because *gasp* his last name is different than his moms (and does sound kinda ethnic donchayaknow).
What a world what a world.
That's it continue to appologize to the idiotic PC left. A class IV offense? Wrong to bring the piece of plastic to school? Calling the water pistol a "weapon"? Defend them if you want but I will never accept such behavior from school officials.
Here we go:
I bet that'll get you a lower-level drone who reports to Phyllis.
This is nothing. A friend of mine had her daughter suspended from school for pointing an oak leaf at another kid on the playground and making sounds simulating the firing of a gun. One week under zero tolerance rules.
This has gotta stop. We cannot allow our children to be treated this way. This is inhuman.
Th school is focusing on the wrong dangers. I am unaware of any water pistols being used by terrorists. However they have attempted to use shoe bombs. So for school safety shouldn't we ban shoes? Oh and coats, pants, shirts, lingerie and boxers can all be used to conceal weapons. Safety first, ditch the clothes. And let's not forget the most recent foiled plot. Perhaps we should ban bringing toothpaste, hair gel, and other liquids to school. Come to think of it why the heck to students need scissors in class? Kind of sharp and pointy aren't they? Too dangerous for sure. Textbooks are heavy and pack quite a wallop. Do you want to be faced with angry students ready to bash you with their math books? I think not.
I think for school safety it is probably best that schools rethink their security policies. " Learn Naked" has the making of a good slogan that students can support.
You are made too many assumptions and gave the public school the benefit of the doubt. We really don't know that the mother came in at acted like a raging fool. I am certain this would have been the school's reaction no matter how the mother behaved. School administrators almost universally act like mind-numbed robots when it comes to these zero tolerance rules.
Actually, it sounds dumb more than on the surface. I live in the area, and there is a whole lot more wrong here than meets the eye.
For instance, I didn't catch it when I skimmed the article, but the first grader was made to sign the school's disciplinary form in the space reserved for the parent - before the mother arrived at school.
This whole situation reeks of idiotism on the part of the school district. The schools are "failing" in this district, meaning that they cannot meet their required metrics for actually teaching. So, ban all squirt guns! That should help the students learn better, right?
Sorry if I'm too sarcastic. I am simply fed up with idiots running the educational institutions across this country (and may God bless those few exceptions to that generalized comment).
When squirt guns are banned, only little squirts will own guns.
I think it's more a case of their lawyers not wanting to be sued by whiners for enforcing the rules in a discriminatory manner.
This is way it was so hard for me to resist choking educators when my oldest kids were in school. People in charge of teaching our children should at least be required to have common sense.
I would at least give 'ole Phyllis a good scare. :)
"It's official. We've become a nation of total pu**ies."
Anybody remember cap guns? I went to a Catholic School and all of us would play war in the wooded lots adjacent to the school during recess. The snapping and popping went on all the time and no one ever got hurt. Granted, this was 30 years ago ... yikes has it been that long?
Gosh, being young today must really suck!
It's not about safety, it's about stamping out the "gun culture".
Now a squirt gun can be a disruptive item, the same as a squirt bottle, and thus they probably should be controlled or even prohibited, but not at the level of a permanent entry on the kid's record, nor at the level of suspension for 10 days for a first violation.
Where are the parents when these asinine rules are being made?
Adoption, step-children, or foster children are three I come up with.Or mom got married/re-married after her son was born. Or took her maiden name back after a divorce.
When my niece was born her mom and he agreed that if she was a girl she would have mom's last name, a boy would have ours.
Actually in many cases they did take them to school. Either so they could hunt on the way to/from school, or to shoot at the school's gun range. They did not kill their classmates, teachers, staff, etc.
I think for school safety it is probably best that schools rethink their security policies. " Learn Naked" has the making of a good slogan that students can support.Perhaps not in high school, where all-day "biology lab" might result. >:o
The Russians and Chinese still use this dated system...
Might as well call it the Michael Moore Elementary School...
Kids need to learn the joys of full auto fire.
Aw, too cute!
These are the same schools that DON'T allow recitation of the Pledge of Allegence or flags in the classroom, and don't allow even private prayer.
I'm 48. I started carrying a knife to school when I was in the third grade. My classmates and I would stand around on the playground and see how far we could throw our knives and have them stick in the ground.
But at least we didn't bring 3 inch red water pistols to school!
Nope. I just searched for "garden hose" on Google images and looked for one with someone spraying the hose. That one caught my eye.
agreed........I could tell you stories that would just piss you right off...but I usually won every battle ( one teacher failed my youngest son just because he could, that is the only battle I lost )but in light of the circumstances involved, I did not punish my son. But I used the example to explain about petty beaurocrats and the little bit of power they hold. He is a hard core conservative now.
Zero Intelligence = PC Zero Tolerance .
Kansas City, Missouri run by liberal democrats.
This is part of leftist anti-firearm brainwashing. School kids are punished and humilated for even talking about or drawing a picture of a gun. The hope is that these kids will grow up and become gun control supporters.
What bad record? By the time the kid is in second grade, he'll be boasting about it!
It is like with my daughter. We still boast of how, on her first day in kindergarten, she was sent to the principal's office for beating up a boy that cut in line in front of her...she was smaller, but she jumped on him and pulled him to the ground in a headlock.
He should have brought in a condom. They would have made him "Pupil of the Month".
My father was in a gun club at his middle school in the 40s. They had a shooting range in the basement of the school. He walked to school every Tuesday with his shotgun, put it in his school locker until school was over for the day, then went to the basement for the club meeting and shoot.
How times have changed. That was in Chester, PA, a suburb of Philadelphia then, a murder capital of Pennsylvania today. Can you imagine any kid doing that in today's PC world ?
LOL on full auto.....
I'm about to be 48 and in my 6th grade summer school in KC we had a rifle range under our gym where we brought our dad's 22 and shot short 22 to learn gun safety and aiming. This was a private school called Pembroke Country Day.
True. Back in the early 80's, my brother and I used to hunt before school. We would leave the shotguns i the Vice Prinicpal's Office while school was in session , then bring 'em home ON THE BUS at the end of the day.
Oh and get ready for this......this happened in NEW FRICKIN JERSEY!
Times have certainly changed my friends!
Or the mother continued to use her maiden name after she was married. That's not all that uncommon these days.
Now, I suppose TECHNICLY a water pistol could be filled with something other than water...something noxious or even harmful.
Would a six year old do that? WAS it filled with anything??
Its always the same with these quivering administors and school boards. common sense goes out the window because they have a "policy". [spit]
Many school districts don't even allow in military recruiters because of their association to guns, and for other PC reasons...
There are some awfully realistic looking squirt guns out there do you want to put the schools in the business of deciding which are realistic enough to fool other children or staff? Realistic enough to be mistaken by security staff for the real thing? IMO, the most even-handed way to avoid such difficulties is to issue a blanket ban on any sort of object gunlike enough to pass muster as a squirt gun.
And then, there is also the issue of what's in the gun children do some pretty stupid things for reasons often unclear to the adult around them; if their child gets a squirt of bleach or insecticide in he face are most parent going to accept the explanation that boys will be boys or it's only a squirt-gun anyway?
Finally, there's the question of why any child should be in the possession of any object that's sole purpose in a school is to distract and disrupt.
As for the response having been something as serious as a 10 day suspension, how else do you otherwise intend to get the child and their parents to take such questions seriously?
We are attempting to to raise children to understand that actions have consequences, and an important part of this process is the develop the ability to understand what will be required of them as adults - and in the current climate of concern with workplace violence, a squirt gun - realistic replica or not - is not part of the job description, And using one even as a joke - will likely get you in deep trouble, if not summarily fired.
all the more reason to close public schools and give choice back to parents ...
Are you completely NUTS???
Stop abusing your child, lady. Get him out of government school. They will traumatize him into thinking his every playful impulse is some kind of crime against the state. They're making a good little comrade out of him one trauma at a time.
Yes. As short a time ago as the fifties and sixties. And possibley even the 70s and 80s in some quarters. Not everyone in the country reacts to the sight of gun with a neurotic emotional breakdown.
Or maybe not. Imagine seeing all your classmates nekkid since kindergarten through all of lifes little pleasures. Like the onset of projectile vomiting when someone gets the flu. And so forth and so on ...
"Biology lab" might not be so appealing having seen, heard and smelled the full range of the human condition throughout childhood in living naked color. (or pallor as the case may be.)
Just a thought. ; )
Yikes, a toy squirt gun? School has changed so much in the decade or so since my son was a first grader. I suppose if the young boy had a condom with him it would be ok, and a lesson in safe sex would be held...