Our 7 year old son in in second grade this year. He is very smart, but sometimes thinks he is too smart and tries to defy his teachers. We have worked closely with his teachers and the school principal to improve his behavior. Last year he was suspended a couple of times for it. This year, he had some discipline problems early and then with a lot of pressure from all of us, his behavior improved dramatically. Many days he was actually one of the best behaved students in his classroom. Then last Halloween, he smarted off to his teacher again. He made a snorting noise as he often does when he is disgusted with things his nose and some snot landed on the teacher’s arms. He says he did not mean to actually snot on the teacher. It turned out he was very sick that day, and within 24 hours he developed a fever of 104. He was immediately sent to the principal’s office, which I would agree with. However, the principal then immediately called the school’s public safety officers. When I got there, there was a uniformed and armed officer already there. The principal and the safety officer were calling the event an assault. He got into my son’s face and told him what he did was a crime and if he had done that to him, he would have been immediately sent to juvinile hall. Furthermore, he told him he would be one of the people they see being slammed on the hood of a car on COPS some day. He made a report to the local juvinile office.
I called several people about the incident, including another second grade teacher, a juvinile lawyer, a person who worked as a school nurse in that school, and someone close to the administrator of a private school. None of them say they would have handled the situation that way. In fact, a very common response was ‘you’re kidding!’. As a result, my wife and I feel we can no longer trust the principal or teacher of that school to deal with our son in a fair, measured, and apporpriate way All the effort and good will we developed working with the principal and teachers the past two plus years has been destroyed with this one event.
Is this a normal response for school personelle to a situation like this? Am I right to think the school grossly over-reacted to the situation? Have things like this happened in the schools in your areas?