Student embarrasses school, school stomps feet

I’ve written in the past about how I know I’ve beaten people rhetorically. When someone starts using my exact rhetoric right back to me in a way that isn’t meant merely to mock or quote, I know I’ve gotten to that person. Something I said got to them and they want to force that same feeling onto me. The only problem is that they’ve gone about it in an obvious way that is more immature than anything. It’s like when a little kid gets embarrassed in front of his friends by, say, tripping and falling. The kid who laughs at him the most may get pushed for no reason other than to make the first kid feel better.

So that brings me to Mustang Mid-High School in Mustang, Oklahoma. A 9th grade student caught a teacher sleeping on the job and snapped a picture with his cell phone. The first reaction of any adult would be to reprimand the teacher. It may be a slap on the wrist, it might be an official write-up, or it might be outright termination. It depends on the exact context as well as the teacher’s history, but I don’t think any mature person doubts some sort of punishment is in line. Unfortunately, the people running Mustang aren’t that cognitively developed:

A ninth grader who snapped a picture of a snoozing substitute teacher with his cell phone camera and posted it on a social network is in hot water with his school district.

The unnamed student, who attends Mustang Mid-High School in Mustang, Okla., was suspended, according to ABC affiliate KOCO.

This is a tad ridiculous. Sure, the student was breaking the rules by having his cell phone on during school hours. I don’t think there’s enough evidence (unless the student said otherwise to administrators) that he had his phone on for anything more than to take the picture, but if they want to follow the letter of the law, this isn’t the worst case of people doing that. Except they aren’t following their rules for the sake of being consistent. If they were, they would have only given the student a detention or some other reprimand which, according to various reports, appears to be the usual course of action. It’s pretty obvious what’s going on here: the unnamed student embarrassed the school and they wanted to get back at him. I would say the school didn’t merely rhetorically lose on this one. Now they look completely stupid.

To be fair, the school is claiming they are taking action against the teacher. They aren’t saying what it is their specific course of action will be, but I have to wonder what Oklahoma’s freedom of information act looks like. In Maine and other states, as I found out when I embarrassed the Augusta Police Department, most personnel information is privileged, but that is not the case for disciplinary records for public employees. It may be possible for local media outlets to find out the specifics of the reprimand. (In fact, I will be emailing them to encourage they do so.)

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One Response

  1. They should suspend the teacher for as long as the student is suspended.

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