When a five-year-old girl picked up a stick on the playground of her kindergarten, she decided to make a game out of it. Because it had a crook in it, she pretended it was a gun and started chasing around her classmates. Everyone was having a blast and laughing with glee. Then the recess monitor saw the stick and killed the fun.
The little child was immediately removed from the play area. Her parents were called. And then the school suspended her because the stick she had chosen to play with resembled a gun…
With a photographed copy of the stick little Caitlin had played with, she was sent home. And when her mother, Brandy Miller, saw what had caused all the commotion, she was understandably upset. Why had the school not handled this better?
Meanwhile, a school district spokesperson told WTVD-TV: “Hoke County Schools will not tolerate assaults, threats or harassment from any student. Any student engaging in such behavior will be removed from the classroom or school environment for as long as is necessary to provide a safe and orderly environment for learning.”
Meanwhile, the kindergartener’s mother, Brandy Miller, said, “We know why it’s bad. We watch the news, but then I have to tell my kid you’re not allowed to play like that in school because people do bad things to kids your age.”
Outraged that the school had suspended her daughter for the minor transgression, Brandy posted about the incident on her Facebook account. As you might have guessed, it blew up and went viral. Brandy wrote:
“Well, Caitlin is suspended from school for pretend shooting people with a stick that looks like a gun. By the way, she’s five years old and in KINDERGARTEN. I can see a suspension for an older kid who knows better and who is actually threatening other kids. Who the hell felt so threatened by a five-year-old girl that they thought she needed to be suspended?
“When I showed up to get her, she looked so confused and didn’t understand why I was there or what a suspension was or why it was happening to her. It was sad. And trying to explain to her that playing like that is wrong was a challenge… because it’s not wrong to play like a damn kid when you’re a kid! I’m so mad. I wish my kids were raised in a better time period when just being a kid was perfectly acceptable.”
Mom wasn’t finished. She added, “I feel bad for her. She feels like all the teachers hate her. I can’t imagine being 5 and feeling that way. Apparently, the schools have a zero tolerance policy for any kind of play with a ‘weapon-like object.’ It’s p****** me off that one minute she’s running around playing with her friends, and the next minute her teacher is snatching her up and dragging her to the office to get suspended. She was so scared and confused. Caitlin is a handful, but I feel like this was way blown out of proportion.”
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