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Tuesday, October 6, 2009

 

Boy, 10, Gets $260 Ticket At School

10-Year-Old Gets $260 Ticket At School

School Officers Cite Student For Disrupting Class

7:37 am PDT October 6, 2009

KIRO TV

EL PASO, Texas -- A 10-year-old student was given a $260 ticket for disrupting class at his school, KFOX-TV in El Paso reported.

For the boy's mother, the incident all started with a phone call at around 9 a.m. one day.

"Well, the school called me ... and told me that my son had an incident at school," said Charity Walka.

Walka did not know that her son's trouble in class would hit her in the pocket.

She said her son was on medication for a behavioral disorder and couldn't stay awake in class at Travis Elementary School.

"So he fell asleep again, and when they tried to wake him, he got angry," Walka said.

She said her son then left the classroom after a teacher tried to restrain him. She said her son also made noise in the hall. He lay down on the floor and wouldn't get up. For disrupting class, officers at El Paso Independent School District gave her 10-year-old son a ticket for $260, a class C misdemeanor.

Walka said her son did not hurt anyone.

"It was just devastating. I was just so angry. He doesn't understand," Walka said.

The station spoke with EPISD officials who said the ticket is legal under Texas law.

"The Texas Family Code does allow for a student who is 10 years of age or older to be cited under this type of offense," said Berenice Zubia, a spokesperson for EPISD.

A reporter found a copy of the law on a legal Web site, showing it falls under Texas Education Code 37.124, although an age was not specified in that version.

Zubia said it is rare that elementary school students get cited for disrupting class and that the fines collected do not go to the school district. She said students can receive citations after a series of incidences of misbehavior. The tickets then go to a justice of the peace for a final decision.

Walka didn't take the ticket sitting down. She fought it, and it was dismissed.

Papers show she was supposed to go to court on the matter on Tuesday. She said her son was going to have to enter a plea, but she said he would not understand what a plea is.

"I could see him getting a citation for drugs or weapons in the school, but disrupting the class, that just seems a bit much. I don't think the punishment fits the crime," Walka said.


Comments:
one more reason to get rid of "public" schooling
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