A 7th grade student from Virginia Beach, VA was discovered to be playing in his yard with his friends using a $25 toy gun, given to him by his mother. Although the 7th grader, Khalid Caraballo, was off school grounds, he and one of the friends who was playing with the toy gun with him, are being suspended and threatened with expulsion for “possession, handling and use of a firearm.” The boys are accused of having used the airsoft pistol to shoot two of the other boys in their play.
Has the school over stepped its authority in punishing these students for activities taken place off school grounds?
In some cities, these boys could find themselves in legal trouble for this activity, as well as trouble from their school authorities. In one city I lived in, the regulations forbid discharging any device—whether air rifle, BB gun, or airsoft pistol, etc.—that propels a projectile via expansion of compressed air or spring within the city limits.
The parents of the children under suspension expressed their feelings that “common sense” wasn’t employed in punishing the children for something that didn’t happen on school property. Carabello’s mother stated that she thought the suspension, and potential expulsion her son faces is unnecessarily harsh for his use of the $25 air pistol she bought him. What do you think?
Featured image screen shot courtesy of wavy.com