Zero tolerance destroys promising student's life: Science experiment "explosion" pops top off container creates smoke, girl arrested and expelled

The principal thought that nothing was intentional and that no harm was done.  So why didn't he prevent her from being arrested?  Regulations.  "Wilmot was arrested Monday morning and charged with possession/discharge of a weapon on school property and discharging a destructive device."  The "weapon" "caused the top [of a small plastic water bottle] to pop up."  Seriously?  That is it.  From the New Miami News:
Kiera Wilmot got good grades and had a perfect behavior record. She wasn't the kind of kid you'd expect to find hauled away in handcuffs and expelled from school, but that's exactly what happened after an attempt at a science project went horribly wrong. 
On 7 a.m. on Monday, the 16 year-old mixed some common household chemicals in a small 8 oz water bottle on the grounds of Bartow High School in Bartow, Florida. The reaction caused a small explosion that caused the top to pop up and produced some smoke. No one was hurt and no damage was caused. 
According to WTSP, Wilmot told police that she was merely conducting a science experiment. Though her teachers knew nothing of the specific project, her principal seems to agree. . . . 
After the explosion Wilmot was taken into custody by a school resources officer and charged with possession/discharge of a weapon on school grounds and discharging a destructive device. She will be tried as an adult. 
She was then taken to a juvenile assessment center. She was also expelled from school and will be forced to complete her diploma through an expulsion program. . . .



Blogger MaverickNH said...

"Zero Intelligence" policies are always deficient in:
1. Assuring safety
2. Reinforcing the efficacy of such policies

When I was in Middle School in Iowa (1971), I did an expository address in speech class on how to make gunpowder from constituent chemicals charcoal (ground briquettes) and sulpher and saltpeter bought at Wallgreens. My teacerh said - Well, aren't you going to light it? It burned a hole through the table and filled the room and hallway full of smoke. We all ran outside and waited for the smoke to clear - before the days of smoke alarms I guess. Nothing was said by the administration, and I was hero for a day. Try that today...

5/01/2013 4:39 PM  

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