December 04, 2006

Elementary School Kid Threatened with Re-education

A 10 year old kids visits a series 9/11 "Truth" (read:conspiracy) websites and gets threatened with psychological evaluation. It's one serious WTF. Well, maybe its because he's unfocussed and not doing schoolwork in class time - uh uh not so:
10 year-old Mark was not punished, the discipline report shows, for breaking school rules or being "off task," but rather because his principal says the webpages in his cache were "inappropriate." ...

According to the Steiner Ranch Elementary Student & Parent Handbook , students are restricted from accessing websites considered to be 'abusive, obscene, sexually oriented, threatening, harassing, damaging to another's reputation, or illegal'-- thus and other websites were not against school rules.

Instead, punishing "inappropriate" behavior is a subjective assault on the free speech of students like Mark. True free speech and any expression of alternate viewpoints is-- unofficially-- a threat to what schools have become.

So it's back to WTF. Psych evals are for kids who are disturbed or require counselling due to trauma or personal situations - not for viewing perfectly legitimate (if a bit looney) websites at school. Some children still don't have access to the internet at home, and school is great place where they can view it outside of the home - while censoring of material inappropriate for minors (such as porn/abusive/defamatory etc.) is cool for cats - they should be given free reaign beyond that. School is for learning and seeking knowledge.

I wonder if kook sites such as folks down at Discovery Institute, Chick Publications, or The Church of Scientology would warrant psychological evaluations in 10 year olds. Don't piss off those Scientology punks, they'll sic Tom Cruise on you. He might jump on your furniture.

The most valid point the school couldd possibly make is what was this 10 year old subversive doing looking up political propoganda instead of "Lindsay Lohan's latest nipple slip".


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