The Finch Formerly Known As Gold

14 November 2004

We said zero tolerance, dammit

Somehow I got it into my head that privately-operated schools might be a little saner, a little less obsessed with process at the expense of results.

It's probably a good thing I didn't put money on that premise, according to this Reuters ("One man's news service is another man's slush pile") report:

Cartwheels and handstands have gotten an 11-year-old girl temporarily bounced out of her Los Angeles-area school. Deirdre Faegre was suspended for a week after repeatedly disobeying school officials who told her not to perform gymnastic stunts during lunchtime.

"Our first concern is the safety of all children," San Jose-Edison Academy Principal Denise Patton told the San Gabriel Valley Tribune. Patton said Deirdre could accidentally strike another student, or injure herself, and other children could get hurt trying to imitate Deirdre, who has been doing gymnastics for five years.

There's only one possible response to this, and Kimberly Swygert, no slouch herself at doing the 'wheel, has already made it:

California, California — can we talk? Someone is not telling you what you need to hear. Apparently, you've spent the last 30 years surrounded by snake-oil salesmen pushing bogus child-rearing theories about self-esteem, creativity, the evils of discipline, and the supposed fragility of children. At some point, you've become convinced that it makes sense for the State to do everything in its over-reaching power to prevent children from ever encountering anything nasty, offensive, challenging, problematic, or painful. You've become convinced that no child should do anything unless all children can do it without fear of any pain being involved.

The kind of place, in other words, where even superheroes could be sued for saving lives.

Rock on, Dr. Swygert. And Deirdre — when you make the Olympic team come 2012 (2008?), make sure you forget to mention where you went to school. They don't deserve you.

Posted at 7:22 PM to Dyssynergy


It isn't a real private school unless the name starts with "Saint".

Posted by: McGehee at 2:09 PM on 15 November 2004

Or maybe "Bishop," inasmuch as I went to one of those.

Posted by: CGHill at 2:15 PM on 15 November 2004