Public schools keep getting crazier

Exhibit One: A seven-year-old boy who was suspended because he chewed his Pop Tart into the shape of a gun. Now, really, why would you suspend a kid for that? A gun-shaped Pop Tart isn’t a threat to anyone. Nor does chewing a Pop Tart into the shape of a gun suggest violent tendencies. …

And that’s the problem with all of these cases. Our justification for putting massive amounts of taxpayer money into public schools is that they’re supposed to teach critical thinking. But stories like these — and they’re legion — suggest that the very people who are supposed to be teaching our kids how to think are largely incapable of critical thought themselves. …

When schools and teachers react hysterically to such non-threats, they’re telling us one of two things: Either that they lack the ability to respond realistically to events or that they recognize that there’s not any sort of threat, but deliberately overreact in order to stigmatize even the idea of guns. The first is educational malpractice; the second is educational malpractice mixed with abuse of power. Neither inspires confidence in the educational system in which they appear.