When kids act out or misbehave at school, some sort of discipline must be forthcoming. But there is such a thing as going too far. At Rock Ridge Elementary school in Castle Rock, Colorado, one mother is steaming mad at the punishment her daughter received recently.
Connie Ramstad received a call from the school regarding her daughter Alegra, 8 years old. She went to the school and found her daughter sitting alone and frightened in a tiny, jail cell-like room. The outraged mom took pictures to document the incident.
“They told us that she had been crying for hours. As if that was the problem.” Said Connie, “I found our girl basically in a jail cell. What they call a detention room. This little room is 2 feet by 4 feet.” One picture of Alegra does seem to indicate that the girl is upset and traumatized.
While the school claims that Alegra had threatened another student, Connie and her daughter say that she was simply sticking up for herself against a class bully.
Connie and her husband have pulled Alegra from the school permanently and, with the help of an attorney, are considering filing a lawsuit against Rock Ridge Elementary School.
The family’s attorney, Igor Raykin has spoken out. “I see a possible deprivation of civil rights. This is not the way to treat a child. Somebody should’ve been on the phone with mom saying ‘look, this is what happened, and this is what we are getting ready to do.'”
The school declined to speak out on this particular case but released a statement:
“We can share that there is a private room in the main office at Rock Ridge Elementary School that is used appropriately for student detention and safety purposes. Photographic images of students in that room are not taken by staff.
“Additionally, the door to the room remains open at all times when a student is present. Students complete school work and are able to leave the room when needed. Further, parents are notified when their child is being placed in the private room, and are free to pick up their children from school on such occasions.
“We are always committed to ensuring a safe learning environment for all students. The school welcomes the opportunity to meet with Rock Ridge families who have additional questions about student discipline policies. Most importantly, we will continue to seek the educational success of every child.”
What do you think? Is the school justified in using this sort of punishment as a form of detention for an 8-year-old child? Or have they gone too far?