Spot the incorrect headline...
(a) Day's detention for eating apple!
(b) Boy's detention after apple snack!
(c) Pupil gets detention for eating apple!
Well done, all you who said (a.) Tom Bosley of The Kings of Wessex in Cheddar got the day's detention not for eating an apple in the wrong place, but for refusing to do his detention after school. School discipline works like this: you have rules, you have consequences for breaking them. If you break them you get disciplined. If you argue back, refuse to do a detention or otherwise fail to step up and take the consequences of your actions, you will then be liable for the original incidence of rule breaking plus the new infringement. Thus students can end up excluded permanently in a chain of events that starts with something as simple as the refusal to take of a cap.
It's the alleged attitude of the parents that I find frustrating. What did Tom's parents think would happen? Their son broke a rule, which presumably he knew about. (You can read the school rules here) The student then decided to skip a detention (although according to the Sun, he did not check the notice board and was unaware of it.) Did his parents think that because Tom was a 'straight A' student, teachers should turn a blind eye to his rule breaking? I am wary of making too many assumptions about the people involved (I've made mistakes that way in the past) but surely one of the things that makes this school distinctive is its disciplinary code? Or maybe everyone concerned suffers from that common delusion of thinking rules only apply to other people?
Personally, I think some of the rules mentioned in the news reports do sound a bit draconian (if the reports can be believed, which is a big if.) However, yet again, it's pretty much a case of 'damned if you do, damned if you don't' when it comes to school discipline.
PS I bet M only read this post because he thought it was me slagging off Steve Jobs again and he was getting ready to fight back...