Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Student Reportedly Suspended for Associating Christmas with Jesus

The Massachusetts school sent home the second-grade boy, who drew Jesus Christ for the assignment to draw a Christmas picture, and mandated a psychiatric exam as a precondition for readmittance. The Boston liberal media has now scurried to the defense of the school.

Video from FOX TV Boston

-- From "Mayor requests schools superintendent apologize for Jesus-drawing incident" by Dino F. Ciliberti, GateHouse News Service, Taunton Massachusetts Daily Gazette 12/15/09

Taunton Mayor Charles Crowley has asked School Superintendent Dr. Julie Hackett to apologize to the family and to issue a public apology and to develop a school-wide policy to prevent this from happening again.

He has also ordered the schools to pay for the psychiatric exam the child had to undergo as a condition of returning to school.

To read the entire article above, CLICK HERE.

From "Editorial: Student didn’t deserve punishment for Jesus drawing" GateHouse News Service, Taunton Massachusetts Daily Gazette 12/15/09

The picture was supposed to be something that reminded children of Christmas, according to the assignment given by the teacher.

So this 8-year-old second-grader at the Maxham Elementary School in Taunton, Mass., did what he was supposed to do.

He drew a picture, a picture that wound up getting him into trouble for no reason at all.

The student and his family recently had visited the Christmas display at the National Shrine of Our Lady of La Salette, a Christian retreat center.

So the student drew a picture of Jesus on a cross.

. . . school officials took offense, dragged the student into the principal’s office, had him undergo a psychiatric evaluation and then suspended him.

Now the poor child is traumatized and doesn’t want to return to school.

To read the entire article above, CLICK HERE.

From "Taunton officials dispute reports on Jesus sketch" by David Abel, Boston Globe Staff 12/15/09

City officials sharply disputed yesterday widely distributed reports that a local elementary school suspended a second-grader and required the boy to undergo a psychological evaluation for drawing a picture of Jesus on the cross.

The story, initially reported by the local newspaper, raised questions of religious bias days before Christmas and was broadcast by local television stations and other news media.

But school officials say that the account in yesterday’s Taunton Daily Gazette was rife with errors and that the father’s description of what happened is untrue.

[Julie Hackett, superintendent of the Taunton public schools] said the student, age 9, was never suspended and that neither he nor other students at the Maxham Elementary School were asked by the teacher to sketch something that reminded them of Christmas or any religious holiday, as the Gazette and other media reported and the father suggested, although his story changed as he explained it.

She said it was unclear whether the boy, who put his name above a stick figure portrait of Christ on the cross, had drawn the picture in school, which his teacher discovered Dec. 2.

She said the drawing was seen as a potential cry for help when the student identified himself, rather than Jesus, on the cross, which prompted the teacher to alert the school’s principal and staff psychologist. As a result, the boy underwent a psychological evaluation.

She declined to comment on the results of the evaluation or whether the teacher had reason to believe that the student was crying out for help. The boy’s father showed reporters a report indicating his son was not a threat to himself or others and could return to school.

"In this case, as in any other case involving the well-being of a student, the administration acted in accordance with the School Department’s well-established protocol," she said in a statement. "This protocol is centered upon the student’s care, well-being, and educational success. The protocol includes a review of the student’s records."

To read the entire article above, CLICK HERE.