When I saw this post from Darren over at Right on the Left Coast about the expulsion of a high school senior over an f-bomb laced tweet at 3:30 in the morning, I was in agreement with him.
What the kid does at 2:30 in the morning is his parents' responsibility, not his school's.
"One of my tweets was, BEEP is one of those BEEP words you can BEEP put anywhere in a BEEP sentence and it still BEEP make sense,” said Austin Carroll, student.
In other words, it was something rather silly.
Well, then -- why the issue with school? It seems that the school is claiming the tweet was done using school equipment.
The principal at Garrett High School claims their system tracks all the tweets on Twitter when a student logs in, meaning even if he did tweet it from home their system could have recognized it when he logged in again at school.
Am i correct in reading that statement as a claim that the school gets jurisdiction over anything a student posts on the internet via social media sites if the student ever logs into an account from school? REALLY?
If the kid used school-issued equipment, i can understand the jurisdictional issue. But the any time, any where standard seemingly adopted by the school? That strikes me as a bridge too far.
Have we really reached the point where the Tinker v. Des Moines precedent that students don't lose their civil liberties at the schoolhouse gate is true only because they have no rights outside of school, either? And if so, are our public schools really preparing students to be free citizens exercising their rights in a free and democratic society?