I think that I was being held accountable for the actions of 200+ teens whose parents would sue if their precious babies got into trouble during lunch, I'd have them all locked up somewhere. There's no way I'd let them out independently. I don't trust the students much - I trust their parents less.
I think it's absurd that we don't trust high school students to leave school for lunch when, in some cases, they'll be out on their own if a few short months.
I think kids will live responsibly if you allow them to try and you don't freak out when they make mistakes.
Anyway, I blame lawyers. Schools are terrified of being sued.
Sometimes they need to be sued. Today's paper reported this from a neighboring district:
Attorneys representing a 13-year-old girl of African and Haitian descent filed a federal lawsuit Tuesday against the Gladstone School District and seven of its employees, saying the girl suffered "incessant and cruel discrimination" that school officials allowed to continue throughout the school year.
The suit, filed in U.S. District Court in Portland, alleges that white students shoved the girl, told her she smelled, spit in her food, and repeatedly called her a racial epithet throughout the 2009-10 school year at Kraxberger Middle School.
Attorneys for the girl and her mother claim the district and its employees "tolerated or condoned" ongoing racial harassment. They said the harassment was so "severe, pervasive, and objectively offensive" that it denied the girl educational opportunities.
After one April incident in which another student told the girl African-Americans don't deserve to live, according to the suit, Kraxberger Principal Nancy Bailey responded by placing the other student in a time-out room.
For some students, school is a nightmare.