Tuesday, March 27, 2012

This School Is Out Of Control

If I have planted my standard on any hill on this blog, it's that what students and teachers do on their own time is of no concern to the school unless and until that behavior significantly affects school activities--and I don't mean just any effect, I mean that the effect has to be significant before the school can react. If a school can suspend a student over this, are there any limits to its power to suspend students?
From Facebook communications to tweets, you're no doubt already aware that nothing you do online is truly private. But should you have a reasonable expectation that your superiors aren't actively spying on you? That's the question a lot of people are asking after Garrett High School in Indiana expelled a high school senior for cursing over Twitter during off-school hours.

The tweet in question dropped the F-bomb a number of times, but was otherwise non-threatening. It was posted at 2:30 a.m. — a time when the student in question was most assuredly not at school. Still, despite the evidence, the school stands by its decision to expel the student.
What the kid does at 2:30 in the morning is his parents' responsibility, not his school's.


Steve USMA '85 said...

The problem is that he logged onto his account using a school computer and thus his foul language was 'visible' to the school system. So, he was responsible for foul language on a school system, not the incident of writing the diatribe in the first place.

If he had never accessed his account via the school's system, it looks as if he would not be in trouble right now.

Darren said...

While I see your point, I don't consider that "significant" enough.

Steve USMA '85 said...

You missed your chance to link some of your screeds on zero tolerence policies.

Darren said...

I have no "screeds" :-)