Father Defend Daughter's Right to Wear Chain-wallet to School

Discussion in 'Law and Justice System' started by Taomon, Apr 2, 2008.

  1. Taomon
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    Taomon Active Member

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    http://www.wickedlocal.com/abington/news/education/x1279456516
    ABINGTON, MASS. - Though it was not technically the proper outlet for debate, Tuesday night’s (March 25) school committee meeting turned into a discussion of safety versus self-expression among today’s youth.

    Abington resident Sean Pratt took the podium before the school committee dressed in modest dress pants and a button down shirt, and spoke on behalf of his daughter’s right to express her individuality while attending Frolio Middle School.

    His daughter, he said, feels most comfortable dressed in gothic-inspired clothes, and could be considered a tomboy.

    Pratt said he was lobbying on behalf of his daughter’s right to wear a chain that visibly connects her wallet to her pants while attending school. He said that while the chain may seem like a small item, it embodies much more.

    “To my daughter, it’s very important… it’s about control, class warfare, about individuality,” he said.

    The wallet chains, which were originally invented to deter pocket picking, are now banned because of their possible use as a weapon, but Pratt believes the ban may also be partially attributed to negative connotations with wearing similar items. He said students who choose to wear wallet chains can be considered anti-utilitarian, opposed to authority, and often of less affluent families.

    But members of the school committee asserted it is completely based on possible danger to students, and school superintendent Peter Schafer said he is aware of a student who was struck with a similar wallet chain.

    Schafer also said the school committee could not lift the ban and the proper outlet to discuss the matter is before the Frolio School Council, which is meeting again at 4:30 p.m. Wednesday, April 9 at the Frolio School main office. With school council approval, it would then be a matter to be decided by the school committee.

    Pratt said he will be attending the April 9 council meeting and will be continuing his efforts in lifting the ban on such chains.

    Pratt said tools that are used in education, such as scissors, a bag strap and pens could be equally dangerous.

    “Common everyday things, those aren’t banned,” Pratt said.
    He said his daughter’s wallet chain was not long or thick, and he noted that chains of similar thickness, length and weight are allowed to be worn as necklaces.

    “A necklace is a chain,” Pratt said.
    Schafer said that though he could not give an opinion on behalf of the board, his personal opinion is to adhere to the anti-chain rule at Frolio.

    “After 15 years of working in middle school, my opinion is schools are safer without chains,” Schafer said.

    Gail Desouza, a mother of children attending Woodsdale Elementary School, said she hopes school officials continue to ban wallet chains as a safety measure. She said not all students may be as responsible with their chains as Pratt’s daughter.

    “The only thing is, she might be able to control the wallet, but other children may abuse it,” Desouza said. “I just get worried as a parent.”

    On Wednesday, Frolio principal Felicia Moschella said she invites all interested parties to attend the council meeting for further discussion of the policy.

    She said only a handful of students have been forced to remove a chain while in school, and she said it’s a policy most parents support.

    “I have never had anything but positive comments from parents when I’ve asked other students not to bring wallet chains to school,” Moschella said.

    But Pratt said he will continue on his mission and hopes to bring the discussion to the public’s attention.

    “This policy, I believe there’s room to compromise on this,” Pratt said.

    Reporter Mikaela Slaney can be reached at mslaney@cnc.com.

    This is an article about me. I am Sean Pratt and I stood up for my daughter's rights.
     
  2. jillian
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    jillian Princess Supporting Member

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    She HAS no right to carry chains. Schools have every right to set dress codes. It doesn't matter if you approve of them or not. If you don't, send her to another school.

    Why are you teaching your children to fight for the sake of fighting and not just when it's reasonable?
     
  3. Ravi
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    Ravi Diamond Member

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    Wow, this is scary. The chain is similar to a necklace, according to the article. How soon before necklaces are banned at school?

    I wonder if she had had a little cross dangling from her wallet chain if this would have become an issue.
     
  4. AllieBaba
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    AllieBaba BANNED

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    I dunno. Whenever my kids get ahold of a chain, necklace, or even those stupid mardi gras beads that are always coming home with them from everywhere they go, I run like the wind to confiscate.

    They whip those things around like crazy, and I just know they're going to put out an eye. Their own. Or mine. My boy was swinging the beads around once and snapped himself on the belly. He had a perfectly circular blemish on his belly for months. It looked like a cigarette burn, only smaller..and I swear I never burned him.
     
  5. Ravi
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    Ravi Diamond Member

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    Sweet! Did you know you can strangle a person with a shoe lace?

    Food for thought.
     
  6. Angel Heart
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    Angel Heart Conservative Hippie

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    Heck... The child could take off their shirt and strangle someone. Where does it stop?
     
  7. Shogun
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    boy child or girl child with the mardi gras beads, allie?



    Lets see someone strangle another kid with a fricking necklace. I don't know if this would be the battle i'd pick though. the school isn't telling her not to wear her goth uniform while outside of school. Generally, i don't agree with public school uniforms but for crying out loud.. it's not like this is the movie Footloose and the town has banned dancing.
     
  8. AllieBaba
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    AllieBaba BANNED

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    Wallet-chains are old-school gang weapons, and that's why kids like them. It's not to keep track of their wallets. It's to make a statement, and to be used as a weapon.

    Neck chains are one thing, but the heavy, distracting chains favored by Goth kids and drug dealers have no place in school. Let them put them on when they get off the bus.
     
  9. AllieBaba
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    AllieBaba BANNED

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    Boy child, of course. He's a freak when it comes to swinging and throwing things.
     
  10. Shogun
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    ahh.. well, then i'd give him a box o' beads and a roundtrip ticket to mardi gras next year!


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