6 YEAR OLD BEING SUSPENDED

Schenequa - posted on 02/23/2010 ( 62 moms have responded )

3

71

0

My 6 year old son was suspended from school for taking his toy nerf gun to school he is in the first grade. He is suspended until he has a hearing about whether or not he is suspended for 3 days or expelled. I dont think thats far cause he is ony 6 years old in the first grade and dont know the difference all he knows is that its a toy. Any suggestions on what I am to do.

MOST HELPFUL POSTS

Kate - posted on 03/24/2010

8

20

0

This is crazy!!! You are right he doesn't know he is just 6! Why didn't the teacher just ask your son for the toy and explain that this kind of toy wasn't allowed to come to school, then just hold the toy until she could talk to you about it? I mean that would be the simplest way to handle the situation without all of the drama.

LISA - posted on 02/27/2010

7

44

0

AND...I think that for Rebecca Pointer to question Shenequa's parenting style/capability and telling her to take a look at her "parenting" is catty and inaccurate. Mind your own back yard. this site is for feedbck and support, not cutting remarks.



LISA

Emilie - posted on 02/23/2010

916

35

139

I think you should have a serious talk with the principal. If your son has never caused any trouble and is a good kid they should realize that it was very innocent thing that happened.

My little brother got in a situation like this when he was in kindergarden. He had a very old pocket knife that he played with at home. It was very dull, no different than playing with a butter knife. He had it in his pocket and he wore the same pants to school the next day. He had forgot that it was in the pocket and got in trouble for it at school. My mom went to the school for a conference and they dicussed that he had never caused any trouble and was a cery nice and truthful boy, they let him off with a 1 day suspension.

Lara - posted on 02/23/2010

14

10

4

Independent thinking is gone in public settings. If your son goes to public school, then he is no longer an individual..he is a number and there isn't an faculty or staff member in that school that will reason with independent thinking either. I would not defend him, only stipulate that in no way did he intend to do any harm with hie NERF toy (dont refer to it as "gun"). Apologize for the distraction he has caused by bringing his NERF toy to school and obvioulsy it will never happen again. Period. DO not get on some bandwagon and try to change the way they are dealing with it...just allow whatever happens to happen and make sure you pat him and his back pack down before he goes to school for now on! Good luck!

If you see this, leave this form field blank.
Powered by RESPECT not THUMPS

62 Comments

View replies by

Dana - posted on 03/25/2010

20

18

2

I would be freak'n! I might try looking in records seeing if this has happened before. See what came out of other situations.

Jessica - posted on 03/24/2010

19

9

0

schools have a no tollerence policy. they can't enforce on some and not others. why did he bring it to school? my son is almost 6 and doesn't take things to school. of course, I DO NOT buy him play guns. I feel they give the wrong message.

Leilani - posted on 03/24/2010

1

18

0

Hi Schenequa,
Unfortunately there isn't much you can do. My husband is an asst. principal of a k-4. He has to confiscate toys all the time and legally can't even give them back if they are guns, etc. Due to the new laws administrators hands are tied. It ties into the whole anit-bullying, school safety regulations.
As a mother of a 13,5 & 4 year old I have a hard time with how things like this are dealt with, but there is a no tolerance policy that neither you nor the school can override.
My suggestion is to learn a tough lesson now and really buckle down with your son about taking ANYTHING to school. It is a shame to have things taken away.

:( Leilani

Elizabeth - posted on 03/24/2010

95

52

19

My sons are 6 and they have a youth hunting rifle... They also have toy guns they absolutly know the difference... and they also know that in school toy guns and other violent toys are not ok. The extent of the disaplinary action is over the top but I understand where the school stands with it's policy. We are a very responsible when dealing with firearms, and the boys understand the difference between toy and not. We also work hard to have them understand that school rule and home rules are different, but both need to be followed. I personally would not have allowed my sons to bring anything that looks like a gun or knife to school because it's not tolereated, and my expectations of my sons is that they will not ask to bring them either.

Jen - posted on 03/24/2010

35

4

2

That is ridiculous! The no tolerance for weapons at school is a good policy but only if it is enforced by someone with at least half a brain and a drop of common sense! My son is nine now, but when he was in Kindergarten they were going to suspend him for "threatening to shoot someone with a rubber band", I fought back I tried to make them see it with a little more perspective, and I questioned their credentials, and I won!

Noel - posted on 03/24/2010

1

22

0

Seems kind of harsh, but my son got detention for a month, for giving a girl a wedgie. He's in the first grade as well. It's a no tolerance policy, I guess that means no tolerance. Hopefully, it'll be just the 3 day suspension, and a valuable lesson to listen to his Mom about not stuffing toys in his backpack.

Kirsten - posted on 03/23/2010

21

49

0

i think that if they try to expel a 6 year old the state super Intendent needs to be notified. it's not like he brought a real gun or anything that could harm anyone. it was a TOY. please contact your principal and get a meeting set up. it'll look like you are being far more preemptive then some parents are. you want to work with them.

Rebecca - posted on 03/23/2010

13

12

1

The zero tolerance policy seems rediculous with a nerf gun which is obviously not real, but they have to say absolutely no guns so someone can't just say "well I didn't know this toy wouldn't be okay".

And toy guns can be used threateningly too so that is something I'm sure they don't want to encourage (I wouldn't). The other day the neighborhood kids were playing a game that involved their toy guns, nerf and otherwise. One kid got angry with my daughter and took his toy guns - not nerf, one of those made to look real - and pushed it hard into her throat and threatened her. Even though my daughter knew the gun wasn't real she was still angry and a bit scared by it.

When both of my kids were 6 they wanted to show off and share all of their toys and there were instances of them getting in trouble for disrupting the class with what they brought. At that age I didn't allow any weapons in the house, toy or not so I didn't have to worry about fake guns. I had to get into the habit of checking backpacks in the morning before school.

Hopefully you will just have to have the 3 day suspension. Good Luck!

Frances - posted on 03/23/2010

45

33

6

I think that him being suspended for 3 days would be a reasonable punishment. Because kids these days try to hurt each other and to learn that bringing toys and dangerous things to school. Hopefully he wouldnt do it again.

Rebecca - posted on 03/23/2010

14

68

0

I agree he is only 6 and they are taking measures way too far. It's nice to see a school that looks out for it's safety but they need to draw the line at reality of the child's age etc. Hang in there. We'll pray for him. We all know this will all just fall through and they will come to their senses.

Christiana - posted on 03/22/2010

63

21

1

I don't know what to advise. But as far as people saying guns aren't toys, they are right real guns aren't toys, but toy guns. Well the name says what it is a toy. I don't like guns myself, and I don't even let my boys play with toy guns a lot. But they are boys and they are going to make toy guns out of other toys. As far as the school I now that having a no tolerance rule about guns is every where and it is a good thing, a nerf gun though looks nothing like a real gun.

Dionne - posted on 03/22/2010

1

17

0

My kids' schools specifically state that NO toys are allowed in school and absolutely no gun of ANY type or form will be tolerated. It's a parent's job to make sure there are no contraband items in their kids' bags and starting this when they're young can help them follow school rules as they get older. None of my kids will take a toy to school and in fact, will remove it themselves if one happens to be near/in their backpacks.

Barbie - posted on 03/22/2010

1

14

0

Call NERF company and tell them to call the school,and not to sell them anymore........OMG..U GOTTAAAAAAAA be kidding me!!!???then all the retailers should speak up!!Public schools are over crowded...............

Ann - posted on 03/05/2010

2

12

0

Well is there a rule about bringing toys to school? If so, they probably did not specify that any type of gun is inappropriate. did you know he took this to school?

Olga - posted on 03/01/2010

3

1

0

Read fairy tales to your son. Fairy tale therapy helps a child understand that some adults will be mean to children and sometimes he will be misunderstood. But as in the fairy tales he will always prevail in the end and will grow up to be a wonderful adult like the "ugly duckling " that everyone picked on grew into a majestic swan Then the mean people will understand that they were wrong. Beyond the incovenience, I don't think that the academic repercussion will be significant given that he is in 1st grade. By the histerical behavior I will assume that is a NYC public school. If you shield his mind, he will not be traumatized by today's craziness of zero tolerance for everything. Good luck, mom, and congratulations on a good job standing up for your kid. I would call NY1 News if they expell your kid. They would love to embarass that principal with the story.

Amy - posted on 03/01/2010

267

7

21

I'm surprised that a child would be suspended for bringing any toy to school that can be found at any Target, Kmart, or Costco for heavens sake. I'd put it in similar terms when speaking to the board.

It's frustrating to see schools take such firm stances on the silliest things, yet they "can't do anything to help" when your kindergartener finds an open condom on the school bus and blows on it.

I'm about ready to homeschool, myself.

Melissa - posted on 03/01/2010

1

8

0

I have no suggestions girl, but my son is pretty close to yours! He drew a pic of himself with male genitals and a gun to his head with blood all over his body! I got called into the principles office and ever since, my son has been isolated from other students. I have him an appointment with a counselor next Monday. I agree that what your son is being put through is BS, because it is just a toy! I have also learned that demographics have alot to do with it...where do you live?

Cheryl - posted on 03/01/2010

2

7

0

I honest due believe that your son school is being very unfair with your son.
Most school would just have a one-on-one with you. I understand that every school
has there policy for safety. But to have a hearing about it and they may expelled him
for a toy. This is only my opinion you should remove your son that school. Children are allow to make mistakes. And that a serious punishment for incident that is so small. I wouldn't that school to teaching anything.

Jeanette - posted on 03/01/2010

136

54

24

Schenequa, please accept my apologies for not seeing some of the replies and acting on them quickly in a timely manner. I do sincerely apologize. ♥

To all reading this....

Community Guidelines:

Our guidelines are simple and are meant to help maintain an atmosphere of generosity and respect, so that everyone can have a positive experience here. They can be boiled down to this: please always try to add value to this community rather than take it away. Also, keep the phrase "No T.H.U.M.P.S." in mind. It stands for

Threats (You may not publish or post direct, specific threats of violence or illegal acts against others.)

Hate Speech (No slurs or stereotyping.)

Unlawful Use (You may not use Circle of Moms for unlawful purposes or promotion of illegal activities. If it's illegal where you live or in the state of California it's illegal here.)

Misrepresentation (You must be who you say you are. No false profiles or false children's profiles.)

Personal attacks (You may not abuse, slander, or vilify another member.)

Spam (You may not publish or post solicitations or advertisements except in designated areas.)

I hope you all can enjoy the rest of this thread and contribute something positive and productive instead of bashing and making a bad situation worse.

Wishing you all nothing but the very best,

Jean

Sherry - posted on 02/28/2010

8

3

0

Is this his first offense? I don't think the school should expell him for it. You as a parent need to tell him of the dangers of any gun. Your right he doesn't understand. He only knows of it being just a gun. But I think the school sees it as though it may be a toy to him, it's still a dangerous weapon. And they are taking precaution for everyones safety. So many times a child will not understand the dangers because their toy gun shots out soft spongy pellets. And then they get ahold of the real thing. Not realizing it's real, they accidently hurt someone. Still I think if this is the first time, they need to counsel him. Not punish him for bringing it to school. Expelling him will do nothing for him. Except make it fun. There for he may want to keep up this behavior. I don't know. I feel for you. I would be doing the same thing you are. My oldest son said someone brought a play gun to school. And he said they shot the kid b/c they didn't know the gun was fake. Pretty scary. I hope you get resolution to this issue. Take Care

Heather - posted on 02/28/2010

22

32

3

get a attorney and a dr that will state your hild does not know what he was doing

Nancy - posted on 02/28/2010

1

19

0

That is just to much I would fight it because the schools need to realize that they are still children and it was just a toy GOOD LUCK

[deleted account]

just chill.first of all u know that ur son thinks it is a toy,but others donot try to understand it....so make him understand that it is a dangerous toy.

[deleted account]

hi my name is anna i,m sorry to here that i think the school is going to far i would talk to a loyer and see where u stand on this the world has gone mad the school could have told u not to bring it in to school and leve it at that hope it goes ok for u

Alison - posted on 02/28/2010

12

24

0

Are you sure they said expelled? You cannot expel a child for that behaviour. Is a nerf gun like a beebee gun? Go and see the principal straight away, don't wait for them to call you. If they try to expel him go over the principal's head, there are procedures he/she must stick to.

Jeanette - posted on 02/27/2010

33

15

5

uh, hello?! it's a nerf gun, and he's 6. Enough said. I would go to the school board and complain. That's ridiculous. I understand the concern about schools and guns, but that is not a freakin gun, it's a toy. I would raise hell if that were my child.

Anita - posted on 02/27/2010

55

12

3

If it's his first offense, I'd seek legal advice. If he's an overall good kid, that's absolutely unnecessary.

Kim - posted on 02/27/2010

462

11

27

Big *hug* . We went on a trip to Disney and my son picked up a souvenior old fashion pirate gun that was a flashlight. He wanted to bring it to school for show and tell and I almost let him before I remembered it was not allowed, when we were kids at springtime all the kids brought squirt guns for after school. I do think suspension is excessive, and for him to be suspended until they know if he will be suspended, that is pretty stupid imo. But its to the point of excessiveness. Poor kids being suspended for touching a friend on the back. A child kissed mine and I was afraid to say anything because they were in Kindergarten and I didn't know if the poor kid would be suspended. Maybe if you tell the school you are sorry he took it to school and you will talk to him about why he can not do that and why he got into trouble since he is only 6 and you feel it will make him more aware than being suspended would.

And my little school in my little town has had kids bring in real guns to school to show friends so unfortunately they do have to ban guns but they should tailor the punishment to the grade.

Tina - posted on 02/27/2010

3

6

0

gosh that doesn't sound fair at all.No warning to not bring toy guns to school before suspened him? He is just a baby, I doubt he had any idea a toy would get him in so much trouble.Im sorry mom!I would pitch a fit, if they expell him, I would bring the story to local paper and see the response.

Alicia - posted on 02/27/2010

3

12

0

I don't know where you live, but unfortunately schools today have a 0 tolerance policy for bringing any kind of weapon, fake or real, to school. On the upside, my son has a friend who brought an actual knife to school and was suspended, but the school decided not to expell. It's unfortunate this had to happen to your son and I can understand how upset you must be. Goodluck to your little one.

Christine - posted on 02/27/2010

67

80

4

I'm a teacher in a public school (I also have my degree in educational leadership) and feel that with the "zero tolerance" policies we're walking a fine line. Personally, I don't think that bringing a Nerf gun toy to school should be a suspendable offense. On the other hand, in our current society, schools cannot run on the personal feelings of its staff. They must work within the confines of what has been mandated by state/federal law and/or demanded by the consensus of parents. This is where the "zero tolerance" polices have sprung from.

My advice would be this:
-First, read the parent handbook for your district and find out what their printed definition of a "toy gun" is.
-Second, go to a store and purchase (if possible) the exact toy your son has and keep it in its original packaging that has the name of the toy (hopefulling it doesn't have the word 'gun' in its title); If you can't purchase it, maybe you can go to the manufacturer's website and obtain a description (and picture) of the toy from there.
-third, bring these to the hearing and try to prove that their printed definition of "toy gun" doesn't match the manufacturer's description of the toy your son brought to school.

Even though there are no lawyers involved (at this stage), this is a legal matter in their eyes and if you present it that way, they will be receptive (and possibly intimidated).

Good luck. Let me know if you have any questions and I'll try to help. :)

Jessica - posted on 02/27/2010

6

16

1

Check the school policy you received the first couple of days of school. We got ours the first week and had to sign it and return it to school. In there they have rules and guidelines as far as conduct and dress codes...etc. Our school has a zero tolerance policy on weapons (even play ones). The kids will automatically be suspended. I'd check that first and request a meeting with the principle to ask any questions you have or see what further action can be taken.

Sandra - posted on 02/27/2010

4

16

0

hi
i got a 6 year old also and his school threaten to expell him since he joing(he was 5)because of his beahaviour what i would do in your case is to start a complain starigh to the governs of schools adn get legal advise from your local CAB office. they cant do that to your boy is evil.also read the schools policy in regards to toys,etc.
if you need help or any info am hapy to help you.am not a lawyers but am a parent that as had problems since day one with my sons school and so far am the winner not them.
hope you this is of some help to you

chin up xxx

Karen - posted on 02/27/2010

30

23

2

This is yet another instance when schools have flat overreacted. Give me a break!! He is 6 years old. What intentions could he have had? I read a couple weeks ago about an 11 / 12 year girl getting arrested for writing on her desk!! OMG the schools have gone crazy!! I would fight it unless it is clearly written in the school handbook.

LISA - posted on 02/27/2010

7

44

0

We had lots of toy guns around us when we were growing up and it seems to me that this NO GUNS OF ANY TYPE is ridiculous. It is only in this present day era that we are seeing so many problems, because kids are not allowed to be kids. We never saw this stuff when we were kids and there was none of this nonsense that playing with a toy gun will harm the child. Ease up and realize the truth. All these new mentalities banning/prohibiting kids to play "that way" is contributory to this in a negative way.



Lisa

LISA - posted on 02/27/2010

7

44

0

I do believe that's ridiculous of the school to do that; maybe they are afraid if that is allowed, then other types of toy guns will follow, from other kids. My son was suspended for extreme behaviors, many times (K, 1st, 2nd and beginning of 3rd grades). He has now been forced to attend an alternate educational setting, out of district, after three full months on one hour a day home tutoring ( ! ) (even though he is academically above average). There were many evaluations done, resulting in multi-diagnoses: bi polar, adhd, oppositional defiant disorder, conduct disorder and a mood disorder. Needless to say, there is an inherent degree of stress living with a child like this, but once I read your entire comment, I realized that your problem was a bit different and that you should be okay, once the suspension runs its course, so long as he doesn't try to bring more toys like that to school. I am not sure if there is any recourse or reversal of their decision, as far as the heavy handed way the school has chosen to deal with this. I do believe that confiscating the item until you picked the item up and a discussion with your son should have beensufficient, though.



Lisa

Stephanie - posted on 02/27/2010

13

4

1

I agree but disagree with everyone's posts here. Yes, it's just a toy and he didn't intend to harm anyone but at the same time with how the public school system is, how many times has an elementary student brought a real gun to school or there's been school shootings. I understand both ends. I would just try to explain the severity of the situation to him, wait for the hearing, and try to get it where it's just a suspension but explain you've discussed it with your son and that it won't happen again.

Jenn - posted on 02/26/2010

213

23

46

Wow.. ok someone is obviously against guns here but we are not talking about a gun or even a pellet gun we are talking about a NERF TOY!!!! come on. Everyone has their own view on guns an where as I understand your side for one am not going to sit here and let your bad attitude disrespect this mother for her view on letting her son play with a NERF TOY! She did nothing wrong, kids are kids an they want to show off their toys to their friends. Its not like she sent him to school with a loaded BB gun in his backpack! Show more respect for others people decisions on what they let their children play with. My step son plays with Nerf toys.. he has a whole trunk full as I am sure thousands of other little boys out there have the same things. Now on to the topic at hand here.... Schenequa... your son did nothing wrong intentionally. I would als agree and not try to change the way they handle the situation because that can just lead to more problems. Just tell them flat out, he is a good boy with no prior history of causing trouble. It was a mistake for him to being his NERF TOY.. (don't use gun because that implies its dangerous and its not.. its foam!.) and it will never happen again. Just make sure that he keeps his Nerf toys home from now on and make sure you explain to him why he cant take them to school. Best of luck!

Jeanie - posted on 02/26/2010

4

19

0

Just tell them that you understand it was inappropriate for him to take the nerf gun to school but really it is not grounds for any child that young to be expelled for such a silly reason. He is way too young for him to realize that a nerf gun at school is bad.

Roxanne - posted on 02/26/2010

6

16

0

I think there is a larg distinction between a "nerf blaster" (which is the official name of most of them" and a gun, or any kind of weppon.

My mom has advocated a couple times for children in her community that have had issues that have gone before the school board. The most important thing is to stay calm, write things dobwn as others speak & when given the oppertuity, speak calmy and clearly using facts. Be prepared as to what you want to stay.

As far a guns are concerned, I think that is a personal preference. The other side of the arguement is that kids who are completly sheltered from guns are the ones who get curious and then hurt them selves or others. My son is 7 and is a cub scout, he has shot a BB gun at camp. He has done a great deal of learning saftey, and has a great deal of respect guns, and we both enjoyed shooting targets with the BB gun together & Archery too. But with that said, because safety and rules have been such a big part of the responsibility that goes with that privlage - he would never bring even his Nerf Blaster to school.

I wish you & your son the best of luck....be strong.....& God Bless.....

Nicola - posted on 02/26/2010

15

27

0

Guns for kids? If you want him to lead that kind of life yes give your kid guns (toy ones hopefully). The schools that my five children go to do not allow toy guns of any kind.

Karen - posted on 02/26/2010

38

30

2

I only wosh for everyone's sake that the zero tolerance for bullying was that well enforced. I'd have to agree with the comment about refer to it as a nerf toy rather than gun when speaking with the school because that is how a 6 year old would view it.



I've known people who don't allow their children to play with toy guns but still tell them to "shot" at people when using a spray bottle in a water fight - doesn't that send a similar message but with a different weapon. It is a sad reflection on society as a whole when rules like these need to be created; unfortunately there is usually a real situation that made them necessary.



Good Luck and hope your son's situation is dealt with in an age appropriate manner.

Frances - posted on 02/26/2010

3

14

0

One question..... Has the school applied the SAME disciplinary action to ALL students with the same or a similar offense? I would want to make sure that my son is subject to the SAME disciplinary action.

Denise - posted on 02/26/2010

4

49

1

WOW!! I see the point of zero tollerance, but also agree that in this new system of discipline we have lost common sense. I agree that the school has to lay down the law because of the recent happenings in other school systems, but I also know that my five year old owns lots of water guns, nerf guns, and even a couple pop guns. I would reiterate to your son though that he isn't to take any toys to school, but also speak at the hearing that the nerf gun wasn't brought with any intention to harm; just a child wanting to show off his new toy, and hopefully if your school board members are parents too they will understand.

Toni - posted on 02/25/2010

126

6

4

I think expullsion is too harsh. But I would not but my children a gun even a nerf one they may think all guns are toys. I also don't allow violent cartoons or games for my daughter. Just going to school and learning from each other is bad enough.

Lisa - posted on 02/25/2010

189

4

29

I wanted to agree that Rebecca Pointer had alot of good points, except she could have said it a little nicer. Although I disagree with her point about giving kids guns, I let my kids play with toy guns and I teach them safety, they also know that guns are not alowed at school period, no toys, no drawing them no playing, nothing, and my kids are 6 and 4.

Julie - posted on 02/25/2010

38

25

0

Wow, Rebecca, you sound like a real winner. If you're not going to offer any sound advice, why even post? This poor woman feels bad enough already!

Schenequa: I know it is hard but, as a teacher, I understand (somewhat!). Lots of toy guns look real and in this day and age, you just never know what kids are going to do. It's very scary! But, I do know that nerf guns don't look real, and I feel this was a poor decision on the school administration's part. However, it is very difficult to change the rules for each individual child, even if we feel they don't understand completely what is happening. I think you should maybe just speak with the school calmly and let them know how unhappy you are, and that this doesn't seem an appropriate punishment for a 6-yr-old, yet still accept whatever the final judgment may be. Then just sit down with your son and explain to him that even though you and he know the gun isn't real, other people may not know the difference and that is why the guns have to stay home. Just so noone gets scared. Keep it simple for him. :) I wish you the best of luck in all that happens!

PS - maybe you should search him b4 he leaves the house! LOL

If you see this, leave this form field blank.
Powered by RESPECT not THUMPS

Join Circle of Moms

Sign up for Circle of Moms and be a part of this community! Membership is just one click away.

Join Circle of Moms