Turns out you really shouldn't play with your food. A second-grader in Baltimore's Park Elementary School was suspended for two days after he chewed his breakfast pastry into the shape of a gun.
In an interview with FOX45, Josh Welch, the second grader, said he was trying to make his pastry into a mountain at first: "All I was trying to do was turn it into a mountain but, it didn't look like a mountain really and it turned out to be a gun kinda." His teacher saw it and reported it.
Josh's father was surprised at the severity of the punishment, saying, "I would almost call it insanity. I mean with all the potential issues that could be dealt with at school, real threats, bullies, whatever the real issue is, it's a pastry… ya know?"
Experts say what should count are Josh's intentions, not his actions. "This is a great example of where facts need to be investigated before emotions take over and children are held accountable for actions and intentions they are not guilty of," says Gwenn O'Keefe, a pediatrician and member of Parenting's advisory board. "We want to respect the truly horrific situations of the past and prevent them from occurring in the future, but this isn't the path to doing that."
"I think a more appropriate consequence would have been a detention in which he had to learn about why violent gestures are problematic," says Mary L., a grade-school teacher in Chicago. "This way, the consequence relates directly to the problem that he did not take weapon reference seriously. Schools are trying to appear strong on guns and violence, but often they skip the prevention and focus on the consequences. Teachers and school administrators need to take time to first teach our students why weapons are an issue in order for consequences to be effective."
Do you think this was an appropriate punishment, or did it go too far? Tell us in the comments.