Why suspensions may not work

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One of my students missed school on Monday and Tuesday. I thought his explanation worth blogging. The disciplinary conundrum illustrated by this story is taking place in schools all over America.

My student was supposed to attend Saturday school. Serious or repeated rule infractions result in Saturday school. The Dean told him he would receive a suspension if he did not make it to Saturday school. Nevertheless, my student did not go.

On Monday, he decided he must be suspended so he did not go to school. First, he went skateboarding where he worked on perfecting two new tricks. Then he went home and played “Gears of War” for a few hours. After that, he visited his cousin and played Dodgeball in some brush somewhere. He showed me the scratches from running through the bushes. Finally, he ambled home. The next day, my student was planning to go to school, but his older brother decided to skip and asked him to stay home too. My student was still thinking of going to school, but then his brother promised they could play “Assassin’s Creed” all day, an offer that was too good to refuse.

My first thought was, “I want to be suspended!” Probably almost every kid in my class wanted to be suspended after hearing that story.

“Weren’t your parents mad?” I asked.

“Yeah,” he said. “They were.” Then he shrugged.

Both parents work during the day. That’s true in a great many households nowadays. In those households, suspensions often become mini-vacations. I supposed I ought to tell this story to the Dean, but what is she going to do? Suspend him? That’ll sure work. At this rate, he might die of happiness.

Eduhonesty: This will require a Dean discussion and a call home. These are motivated parents. Dad made it to conferences and I know he has been trying to keep his boys on track. I’ll try to help. Still, disciplinary issues in homes where both parents work can be extremely tough to manage.