Officials demand 11-year-old undergo counseling and “psychiatric evaluation”
source: Steve Watson
In yet another case of ‘zero tolerance’ insanity in schools, an 11-year-old boy was interrogated without the knowledge of his parents, and then suspended after he accidentally brought a plastic toy gun to school.
What makes this case stand out is that fact that 6th grader, Caden Cook, actually knew he shouldn’t have brought the toy with him to school and voluntarily turned it in, after finding he’d accidentally left it in his jacket pocket.
Instead of using their common sense, officials at Fredrick Funston Elementary School in Chicago freaked out and subjected him to interrogation and intimidation tactics, threats and accusations of lying, according to a report by The Rutherford Institute, a rights group whose attorneys have taken up the case.
“According to Caden’s mother, Ms. Fraustro, Caden was waiting in line to be patted down on Friday, January 31st, when he realized that he had mistakenly left in his sweater pocket a toy plastic gun which he had played with the previous night…” a letter from Rutherford Institute President John Whitehead to the Director of Chicago Public Schools reads. “Caden alerted the security personnel to his predicament.”
The fact that the school is patting down 11 year old children is shocking in itself and highlights how the “security” enhancements seen in airports and at transport hubs have made their way into every day American life. Perhaps school officials are simply emulating airport security, which is now engaged in frivolities such as confiscating miniature toy guns from ‘Toy Story’ Woody dolls.
The further fact that school officials in Caden’s case did not even alert the boy’s parents before questioning him in such an aggressive manner is equally as disturbing. The Rutherford report also indicates that when the boy’s mother was finally called in, she was berated and accused of being a bad parent for allowing her son to play with toy guns, whether it be in or out of school.
The boy’s punishment was a one day suspension, which will remain on his permanent record, as well as a demand to undergo counseling and psychiatric evaluation before returning to school.
The boy, who is now said to be suffering from distressing nightmares over the incident, may not even return to the school, or any school for that matter, given that his mother immediately removed both of her children from the District in order to homeschool them.
“This case speaks volumes about what’s wrong with our public schools and public officials: rather than school officials showing they are capable of exercising good judgment, distinguishing between what is and is not a true threat, and preserving safety while steering clear of a lockdown mind set better suited to a prison environment, they instead opted to exhibit poor judgment, embrace heavy handed tactics, and treat a toy gun like a dangerous weapon,” said Rutherford’s Whitehead.
“School officials sent a strong, chilling message to this child and his classmates that they have no rights in the American police state.” he added.
The Rutherford Institute is seeking a lifting of the suspension, as well as all references to the incident being struck from Caden’s permanent school record.
As we have thoroughly documented, there is now a plethora of cases of overreactions in schools to anything remotely considered gun-like.
Other similar idiotic cases include the infamous Hello Kitty bubble gun ‘terroristic’ incident, the miniature lego gun school bus massacre, the plastic toy soldier, holding a gun on a cup cake catastophe, and the perilous pencil pointing ‘pow powers’ of Virginia.
Even food bitten into the shape of a gun has been cracked down upon with suspensions.
The latest to do so are Florida representatives who have introduced legislation that says “simulating a firearm” is not grounds for disciplinary action. The bill, which cleared its first legislative hurdle last week, lists “brandishing a partially consumed pastry or other food item” as something that should not land students in hot water.