Schools and turning 18
Original post made by Paly Parent, Palo Alto High School, on Mar 6, 2012
Today's incident involving an 18 year old student at Gunn makes me wonder how the schools treat our children once they turn 18.
The incident was definitely serious and warranted some action by the school, but is calling the police something that would happen in a classroom squabble if the students had been minors? If they had been 17, or 13, or even 11, do the schools call police to sort out classroom squabbles or should they?
Back in my day, I can't imagine that such serious action would have been taken even with someone getting hurt and requiring stitches regardless of the age of the students involved.
This sounds like a very sad story for all involved and I am glad that no serious injury took place. However, was this a result of prolonged bullying where the subsequent situation was a cauldron waiting to boil over? Was this a nice kid who just lost it and went too far? Was this a problem student who was always having problems throughout his school career? And was he treated differently today from how he would have been a couple of months ago when he was 17?
These are important questions and as parents of high schoolers, it is fair to discuss them. As high schoolers, 18 year olds are still under the parents control as far as the schools are concerned, in aspects of excusing absences and getting permission for school activities. But, if they misbehave, do parents get informed before the police? As students are they aware of this and as parents are we aware of this?