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BOTD 10/21/14 "Full Moon" A Late Chat Production

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David M. Katz

A Late Chat Production

You are the Dean of Discipline at a private all boys school.  You have one Daniel Kingston, a thirteen year old eight grader, standing before you trying to explain his most recent referral to your office.

You are responsible for most of the discipline at your school and have several options available to you such as detentions, writing assignments, ISS, suspension, lunch isolation, and you may even recommend students for expulsion in severe cases. You are allowed to utilize corporal punishment and may give up to four licks with a wooden paddle.

Young Mr. Kingston is a great student and good in athletics and is very popular with his peers but he is somewhat of a class clown.  This is not Daniel's first visit to your office.  Daniel has received lectures, detentions, lines and, most recently, three licks, for various rule violations.

Daniel brought a full color glossy photograph of his own naked back side to school with him.  (He says he took the photo himself and printed it from a photo printer he has at home.)  His history teacher is fond of using power point presentations.  The students find them boring.  Daniel sneaked in the classroom before class and pulled the screen down and taped the photo of his bare butt to the screen and rolled the screen back in place.  When the teacher lowered the screen to start the power point there was Daniel's "likeness" in all of its glory.  The class, especially Daniel, all howled with laughter. To keep the class from getting a group punishment Daniel confessed to his "crime."

Daniel Kingston (13 - 8th Grade)
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Daniel's response to you is:

"Chill out!  I was just trying to liven things up.  Mr. Foster is so boring and so I thought we could all use a laugh.  We're all guys around here and it's just a butt.  What's the big deal?"

How do you deal with Daniel?

BONUS: You are Daniel's parent and he has just showed you a letter from the school outlining what he did and the school's response.  What do you do?

Cleverly disguised as a responsible adult.


The main thing that bothers me here is the idea that 'disrupting class' is an appropriate way to 'liven things up'.

"Daniel, when I explain to your father that you feel 'livening things up' is part of your job, what do you think he's going to say?"

I'm honestly torn between agreeing with him that this isn't a big deal (and why are there so many boring teachers in the world?), and deciding that he's just not a good fit for this school, and, since he's wasting not only his own parents money, but that of the other students, that we should invite him to leave.

I think I'm going to do just that, offer to call his parents in, and see what he thinks.

As Daniel's parent, what I do will depend on what happened with the school, but he's going to know that I'm extremely unhappy with him.

"In the end, it's just a story. But if you ask me, it's all true."


Perhaps it would entertain the class to see that little bare butt getting paddled in front of them!
Seriously though I will be paddling Daniel to the max in the local regulations in the privacy of the office and ensuring he has to explain himself to his parents as well. Its bad enough he did this but I don't appreciate an 8th grader telling me to chill so Daniel is lucky the paddling is all he gets at school as I will inform his Mother or Father.

As Dad I am bound to take this further, mainly for the attitude. As Dan has already been paddled I will confine myself to a stern lecture and a handspanking to awaken all the licks he had earlier. Dan can also do without his computer /electronic toys tonight

John Boy

I'm agreeing with Square tonight.

David M. Katz

I am going to suspend Danny pending a conference with his parents. Perhaps his parents are wasting their money and Danny will be better served in a different school. I am not going to push expulsion but I won't protest if his parents decide to withdraw him. If Danny stays he will be given the max of four licks and be on probation for the rest of the school year. If there are any further behavior issues then I will recommend expulsion. I will also speak to the principal/headmaster to see if we can get Mr. Foster some help in making his teaching methods more relevant.

As parent I am going to attend the conference and agree to the terms of Danny remaining enrolled. Danny will lose the privilege of his electronic gadgets (except as needed for school) for the next two weeks.

Cleverly disguised as a responsible adult.


The lesson may be boring, but life can be like that on occasions.

I'm joining Square in getting to the root of the problem.

Pi Beta

He has owned up, not tried to avoid the consequences so his presence in school is safe for now.

I will question him as to what consequences he thought he would face when he dreamed up this little escapade which was clearly pre-planned. Since he's been paddled before, I suspect he will tell me that he expected a paddling at the top end of the scale. I will not disappoint him. However, I will add a lot of extra work for him to do at home in the next week - probably a number of essays about behaviour - that will reduce his time for planning further mischief - and let his parents know what he has done.

As his father, I'll view the damage caused by the paddling when he gets home and, unless it is severe, add to it with a gymshoe and photograph the result, telling him that I will be sending a copy to the teacher concerned to put up to show what happens to boys who misbehave and which he can, perhaps bring out of his drawer as a reminder every time my son starts to play up - "Is this what you want to happen again, lad?"


Editor Extraordinaire
Schools would be very dull places if there weren't kids like Daniel. Schools need kids with spirit and even a few who challenge the rules. I see no need to make this into a huge incident. It's not bullying, stealing, vandalism, cheating or any of the other misbehaviors that I would find intolerable -- only a momentary disruption of class. As an administrator, I must support my teachers, so I will admonish Daniel for his disrespect of Mr. Foster. As part of his punishment, Daniel will write a letter of apology to Mr. Foster. I will also paddle Daniel -- four licks, as he has already had three.

As Daniel's father, I will do nothing except give him a painful lecture unless I feel the school hasn't handled the situation adequately.


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