|Photo: The Independent|
The mother of a six-year-old formerly in the Richmond Public Schools said she’s appealing the one-year expulsion of her first grade son for possession of marijuana.
The student, enrolled at G.H. Reid Elementary in Richmond, Virginia, approached the physical education teacher in November on the playground and pulled out a bag of pot, according to his mother, reports Vernal Coleman at Style Weekly.
“Look at this,” the boy said. “This is weed. My mother gave it to me.”
The P.E. instructor and another teacher questioned the boy and escorted him to the school’s front office, where he was questioned again by a school security officer.
The School Board discipline committee recommended expulsion on November 30, following the school system’s standards of student conduct.
The boy is the only elementary school student expelled from Richmond Public Schools for alcohol, tobacco or drugs since at least 2005, according to Virginia Department of Education statistics.
According to the boy’s mother, he actually got the marijuana from another family member. “I would never put my son’s life in jeopardy,” she said.
The mother, who had been studying to become a nurse’s assistant, has since had to drop her classes to take care of her son, since he’s home all day now. His three siblings are still enrolled in the Richmond Public Schools.
According to the school district’s rules, elementary students who are expelled can’t come back to city schools for a year, after which they can apply for reinstatement.
“A parent is responsible for the actions of their juvenile children; regardless which family member gave the child the illegal drugs, the mother is responsible,” commented reader Glen Allen on the Style Weekly site. “It does not at all surprise me that the irresponsible school board and their ignorant attorneys could not figure this out, but I feel sorry for the child.”
Neighboring schools, including Henrico and Chesterfield county schools, are unwilling to admit students expelled from other school districts. With private school prohibitively expensive, the child’s mother said, her hope is to successfully appeal her son’s expulsion before the school board’s discipline committee on Thursday, January 6.
If you believe the school board made a bad decision in suspending, for one year, a six-year-old child for marijuana, contact information is below.