Tag Archive: Elementary school


Kenny Thompson paid the negative lunch balance fo over 60 kids at the school where he mentors and tutors.

Courtesy of Kenny Thompson
Kenny Thompson paid the negative lunch balance fo over 60 kids at the school where he mentors and tutors.

As a tutor and mentor at Valley Oaks Elementary School in Houston for over 10 years, Kenny Thompson has taken pride in helping out kids. So on Monday, when he found out that over 60 students at his school were eating cold sandwiches for lunch because of overdue funds on their accounts, he decided to pay off the negative balance. All $465 of it.

“It was the best money I ever spent,” Thompson, 52, told TODAY.com. “It was the best gift I ever gave myself. I went into my car and screamed.”

He didn’t realize how widespread the lunch account problem was until he learned that a Utah school had thrown away the lunches of students with negative balances at the end of January. That’s when he decided to look into the issue in his own community.

He found out that some students whose parents hadn’t paid were eating cold cheese or peanut butter and jelly sandwiches for lunch, instead of hot, hearty fare. And others avoided the lunch line altogether, preferring not to eat rather than face the embarrassment of not being able to afford the same lunch in front of their peers. Many of these students were already on reduced lunch, which costs just 40 cents a day.

“It was horrifying, it broke my heart,” he said. “These are elementary kids. They’re not bankers, and not responsible for the financial issues in the household.”

His wife, a teacher at Valley Oaks, encouraged him to follow through on the idea, but warned him that he wouldn’t be able to buy the new pair of Doc Martens he’d wanted. That was quite all right with Thompson.

“My work boots are still good,” he said with a chuckle.

Houston residents heard about Thompson’s generosity when his story aired on a local news station, NBC affiliate KPRC, on Wednesday.

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Wash. State Students Suspended For Nerf Guns After Teacher Gave Permission

Wash. State Students Suspended For Nerf Guns After Teacher Gave Permission


Several students at Chase Lake Elementary School in Edmonds, Wash. were suspended this week for bringing Nerf guns to school.

The children say they asked and were given permission by a teacher before bringing the toys to school last Friday morning, where the students planned to shoot the toy’s foam darts 100 times for a probability project. The school suspended the students for firing the toys before class, citing the school’s “zero tolerance” policy on toy guns.

Shannon Shumard’s fourth grade daughter and sixth grade son received one day suspensions for simply being present and playing with the toys that morning, even though they were not the owners of the Nerf guns.

“If the teacher and the school staff don’t even know their own rules, how are the children supposed to know them?” said Shumard.


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5-Year-Old Interrogated By School Over Toy Cap Gun Until He Wet Himself With Fear

Then suspended for rest of the year
Steve Watson

Yet another child barely out of nappies has been persecuted by school officials for playing with a toy gun on the school bus.

The Washington Post reports that the five-year-old from Dowell Elementary School in Lusby, Maryland was questioned by school officials for over two hours after he showed a friend his cowboy-style cap gun on the way to school.

Officials finally called the boy’s mother when he wet his pants. The mother told the Post that she found it highly unusual that her son soiled himself, indicating that he was very intimidated.

The report states that the boy’s parents bought him the plastic, orange-tipped cap gun at Frontier Town, a western-themed adventure centre. Following the interrogation, the boy told his mother that he had brought it to school because he had “really, really” wanted to show his friend, who had previously brought a water pistol to school.

The school’s principal told the mother that her son had pointed the toy at other students and pretended to shoot them, although the boy and his sister, who was also on the bus and subsequently questioned, say this is not the case.

The principal even stated that had the gun been “loaded” with caps, then it would have been “deemed an explosive and police would have been called in.”

The boy, who remains anonymous has been suspended from school for 10 days. “If the punishment stands, it would become part of the boy’s permanent school record and keep him out of classes the rest of the school year,” the report notes.

“The school was quite obviously taking it very seriously, and he’s 5 years old,” the boy’s mother said. “Why were we not immediately contacted?”

“I have no problem that he had a consequence to his behavior,” the mother added. “What I have a problem with is the severity.”

The family has hired attorney Robin Ficker, who was also the attorney involved in the infamous Hello Kitty bubble gun incident back in January, when school officials in Pennsylvania suspended a five-year-old girl for “threatening” class mates with the toy that contains a harmless soap solution. Officials were also said to have interrogated the girl for several hours, before notifying her parents.

Officials at the Mount Carmel school issued a statement describing the girl’s actions as “terroristic” and then refused to retract it following media coverage.

“Kids play cowboys and Indians,” Ficker stated with regards to the latest incident. He added that the boy’s age is important. “They play cops and robbers. You’re talking about a little 5-year-old here.”

He’s “all bugs and frogs and cowboys,” the boy’s mother added.



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Courtesy Angela Hornsby

Ja’Nae Hornsby, 9, (right) with her cousin Taylor, 14, in a photo taken over the weekend.

A 9-year-old girl who was “always smiling” is among the first of the Oklahoma tornado victims to be identified.

Third-grader Ja’Nae Hornsby was one of the students who perished when the twister demolished Plaza Towers Elementary School in Moore, Okla. on Monday afternoon.

Members of her grieving family gathered Tuesday at a Baptist church in Oklahoma City to console each other after a night of anxious waiting ended with a hope-shattering call from the medical examiner’s office.

Her aunt, Angela Hornsby, said Ja’Nae had spent last weekend at her house, playing with her cousins and “doing what little girls do.”


“They like to play dress-up,” she recalled. “My daughter puts jewelry on them and I took pictures of them dancing together and they took video. They were just happy.

“She was always happy, always smiling.”

Courtesy Angela Hornsby

Ja’Nae Hornsby, 9, with her 2-year-old sister Jia, in a photo taken over the weekend.

On Monday, Ja’Nae went off to Plaza Towers Elementary School while her father, Joshua, headed into Oklahoma City for work.

As the tornado bore down on the suburb of Moore just before dismissal time, the father of two tried to race back home to get Ja’Nae from school and his two-year-old, Jia, from daycare, Angela Hornsby said.

The highways were jammed, though, and by the time he got to Moore, the grade school had been reduced to a pile of rubble, its parking lot transformed into a triage area for surviving students being pulled from the debris.

There was no sign of Ja’Nae, though. Her father and other relatives shuttled from shelter to shelter, “looking for answers,” Angela Hornsby said. She dialed all the hospitals that had taken the injured but could not find her niece.


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Benjamin Krain / Getty Images
An aerial view shows destroyed houses and buildings on May 21 in Moore, Okla.

Joshua Lott / AFP – Getty Images
A woman and young boy walk along a street and view destroyed houses on May 21 in Moore, Okla.

Jewel Samad / AFP – Getty Images
A man salvages items from what is left of a bedroom of his home on May 21 in Moore, Okla.

Paul Hellstern / The Oklahoman, NewsOk.com

Teachers carry children away from Briarwood Elementary school after a tornado destroyed the school in Oklahoma City, Okla., May 20, near SW 149th and Hudson.


Steve Gooch / AP

This aerial photo shows the remains of houses in Moore, Okla., following a tornado Monday, May 20.


Sue Ogrocki / AP

A child is pulled from the rubble of the Plaza Towers Elementary School in Moore, Okla., and passed along to rescuers Monday, May 20, 2013. A tornado as much as a mile wide with winds up to 200 mph roared through the Oklahoma City suburbs Monday, flattening entire neighborhoods, setting buildings on fire and landing a direct blow on an elementary school.

Additional photos here


An enormous tornado roared through the Oklahoma City suburbs, killing at least 51 people, including 20 children Monday. The twister pulverized entire city blocks, left behind miles of mangled cars and splintered wood, and destroyed an elementary school where seven children were found dead.

Crews frantically searched the wreckage and were only beginning to get a sense of the destruction when night fell hours later. Officials warned the death toll could climb. At one hospital, 85 patients, including 65 children, were being treated for minor to critical injuries.

“The whole city looks like a debris field,” said Mayor Glenn Lewis of the city of Moore, which appeared to be the hardest hit.

At least seven of the dead children were killed at Plaza Towers Elementary School, where the tornado tore the roof off the school about 3 p.m. A teacher told NBC affiliate KFOR that she draped herself on top of six children in a bathroom to shelter them. Officials said the dead children drowned in a pool of water at the decimated school.

It was not clear how many children still were missing. Students in fourth, fifth and sixth grade were evacuated to a church, but students in lower grades had sheltered in place, KFOR reported. More than two hours after the tornado struck, several children were pulled out alive.

NBC’s Brian Williams and NBC’s Al Roker report on the aftermath of a tornado, which is believed to have been up to a mile wide, and left a huge path of destruction as it cut across Moore, Oklahoma.

The twister was a mile wide at its base, according to The Weather Channel, and a reporter for KFOR said the tornado kicked up a cloud of debris perhaps two miles wide. The National Weather Service initially classified the storm as an EF4, the second-strongest type, with winds of 166 to 200 mph.

“It seems that our worst fears have happened today,” said Bill Bunting, a National Weather Service meteorologist in Norman, Okla.

Even before the death toll began to climb, television footage showed a landscape shattered — not the arbitrary damage of a tornado that leaves some homes untouched, but vast and utter obliteration.

Emergency workers stepped gingerly around piles of wreckage left on the foundations of homes. Other people simply walked around dazed, marveling that nothing was left of their houses — and in many cases that they themselves were alive. Fires broke out in several places.

“I lost everything,” one man said as he walked through the ruins of a horse farm. “We might have one horse left out of all of them.”

Tiffany Thronesberry told The Associated Press that her mother, Barbara Jarrell, called her and screamed: “Help! Help! I can’t breathe! My house is on top of me!”

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Published on Apr 4, 2013

Connecticut’s governor signed tough new gun ownership rules into law, four months after a gunman opened fire on an elementary school in the state, killing 20 children and six adults. The measure passed in the state assembly makes Connecticut the third state after New York and Colorado to tighten gun laws in the wake of the December 14 massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School. More than 100 makes of rifles – including the Bushmaster AR-15 used by killer Adam Lanza in the Newtown school – were added to an existing, but now vastly expanded ban on military-style weapons. In addition, ammunition clips holding more than 10 rounds must now be registered, while new sales of the large clips are banned.




John Bacon and Doug Stanglin, USA TODAY2:59p.m. EDT April 4, 2013

Connecticut Gov. Dannel Malloy signed the nation’s most far-reaching gun control bill Thursday, the ceremony in Hartford concluding several emotional weeks of debate and compromise since the state was rocked and the world stunned by the mass murder of children in Newtown.

“This is a profoundly emotional day for everyone in this room,” Malloy, a Democrat, said moments before signing the bill. He added that he hoped the state’s bipartisan effort would provide an example for Congress.

“When 92% of Americans agree that every gun sale should be subject to a background check, there is no excuse” not to make it federal law, Malloy said.

The Connecticut law adds more than 100 weapons to the state’s ban on assault weapons, limits the capacity of ammo magazines and requires background checks for all weapon sales, including at gun shows.

It also establishes the nation’s first statewide registry for people convicted of crimes involving dangerous weapons. Access to the registry would be available only to law enforcement.

READ: Bill summary

Nicole Hockley’s 6-year-old, Dylan, was among the 20 children who died when Adam Lanza began shooting inside Sandy Hook Elementary on Dec. 14. He also killed six adult staff before killing himself. Hockley said she appreciated the bipartisan political effort that led to the law.

“While I am grateful for the progress being made, I wish more than anything that I was just back at home waiting for both Dylan and Jake to come home from school,” she said.

Hockley said her effort to press the law forward was one way to honor her son’s life. “We want Newtown to be known not for tragedy, but for transformation,” Hockley said.


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And  people  wonder  where  the   neighborhood  communities  (Local  Snitches,  I would have  used the  word informants  but that  was  too nice a  name)  that   socialist  and   communist  countries  have  to  rat out  the non  conformists come  about?

Here  you  have  it  in it’s  purest  form.

These individuals who are more than   willing  to  make  an  example  of those  who do not  follow  the  rules  set  forth  by a  tyrannical  system.

We  must  respect the  opinions  of  others  and  yet  that  little  boys  opinion  and  that  of  his parents  were  not  respected.   Having  summarily  been  made  an  example of  for the  rest  of  the  students  to go  home   with a  story  of  chastisement for insensitivity.   It is  called  indoctrination.   So  here   we have  it ,  “Do as  I  say  and  not  as  I  do”.

Trickle  down   status  quo,  perhaps?


Michigan Elementary School Confiscates “Insensitive” Cupcakes

Daisy Luther
Activist Post

In a terrifying brush with violence, the administrators of Schall Elementary School in Caro, Michigan have boldly done what was necessary in order to protect a classroom of vulnerable 3rd graders.

They have taken a little boy’s birthday cupcakes and confiscated those frosted harbingers of evil.

Why? you may be asking yourself. Oh my gosh, were the cupcakes poisoned? Were there razor blades baked inside of them, fiendishly awaiting the opportunity to cut little mouths?

No. It’s WORSE.

They had plastic green army guys on them. With plastic green GUNS. Can you imagine the fear the class must have felt when the container of cupcakes was opened and they saw all those GUNS aimed at them? Can you imagine the terror?

There’s no time for a lockdown! Those cupcakes are IN THE CLASSROOM. They must have been simply paralyzed with fear.

Principal Susan Wright released a statement to local media defending the decision.

“These are toys that were commonplace in the past,” she wrote. “However, some parents prohibit all guns as toys. In light of that difference, the school offered to replace the soldiers with another item and the soldiers were returned home with the student.”

“Living in a democratic society entails respect for opposing opinions,” she stated. “In the climate of recent events in schools we walk a delicate balance in teaching non-violence in our buildings and trying to ensure a safe, peaceful atmosphere.”

Principal Wright explained in her statement that she meant no disrespect to the military.

“By not permitting toy soldiers on cupcakes at school, no disrespect for our military or for the brave men and women who defend our rights to have our differences was intended,” she wrote. “Our commitment is always to our children and creating a safe place for them to learn, grow and have respectful dialogues about their differences.” (source)

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School suspends 7-year-old for shaping breakfast pastry into ‘shape of a gun’

By Daily Mail Reporter

PUBLISHED: 14:40 EST, 2 March 2013 | UPDATED: 16:49 EST, 2 March 2013



Josh Welch, a second-grader at Park Elementary School in Baltimore, said he was trying to nibble his strawberry snack into a mountain.

But when his teacher saw what he had done, the boy says she got ‘pretty mad’ and he knew he was ‘in big trouble.’ Josh was suspended for two days.

Dangerous? Josh Welch, a seven-year-old boy from Maryland, was suspended from school for two days for shaping a pastry into what his teacher thought looked like a gunDangerous? Josh Welch, a seven-year-old boy from Maryland, was suspended from school for two days for shaping a pastry into what his teacher thought looked like a gun

Threat: The school sent home a letter with every student informing parents that: 'A student used food to make an inappropriate gestureThreat: The school sent home a letter with every student informing parents that: ‘A student used food to make an inappropriate gesture

Josh’s dad was called by the school and informed that his son had been suspended for two days.

The school sent home a letter with every student informing parents that: ‘A student used food to make an inappropriate gesture.’

Jessica Maher
Denver Post
Wed, 06 Feb 2013 12:12 CST

© screengrab via KDVR

A 7-year-old Mary Blair Elementary School student says he’s confused about getting in trouble for trying to save the world from evil, though Thompson School District officials contend that the boy broke one of the school’s “absolutes.”

Parent Mandie Watkins said Mary Blair principal Valerie Lara-Black called her Friday afternoon to inform her that her second-grade son, Alex, had been suspended for throwing an imaginary grenade during recess on the playground.

Alex did not have anything in his hand at the time and made no threats toward other people, Watkins reportedly was told.

Watkins said Alex’s story matched up with the principal’s account: He threw the pretend grenade at an imaginary box that had something evil inside.

He was going to save the earth this way, and when he threw the grenade he pretended that the box exploded, in apparent success.

“He is very confused,” Watkins told the Reporter-Herald on Tuesday. “I’m confused as well, so it makes it hard for me to enforce these rules when I don’t even understand them.”

The rules are laid out by Mary Blair Elementary School in a list of “absolutes” that are posted on the school’s website and are aimed at making Mary Blair a safe environment.

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The details of the Sandy Hook
(Newtown) story matter.

First, the dead an their
surviving family members
deserve and accurate

Second, if national policy
is going to change based
on this story, the story
better be correct.

The story is not correct.
It can’t be, Here’s why…




Fred R. Conrad/The New York Times

Children from Sandy Hook Elementary School traveled by bus to their new school in Monroe, Conn., on Thursday.


MONROE, Conn. — On the first day back, Sean Murray said, his 9-year-old son, Brendan, was eager to return to school and see his friends, but he was nervous at the same time.

Fred R. Conrad/The New York Times

A sign welcomed students to school.

“Brendan had two kids in his class whose siblings were killed,” Mr. Murray said. “He’s been getting counseling outside of school, and he might be getting more therapy in school. He’s a trouper, and he’s marching along, but you know there are underlying effects.”

For Brendan, for his mother, Anne, an occupational therapist at Sandy Hook Elementary who lost three of her closest friends, and for everyone else, the road back began on Thursday at what had once been a middle school. It was seven miles away from the school where 20 children and 6 faculty members were killed by a gunman Dec. 14.

Mr. Murray said the district had done a “remarkable job” of recreating the old school in a new setting and providing a nurturing environment that included therapy dogs there to greet returning children. Still, he said, it will be tough.

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