Two high schoolers decided to take a photo with their pretend guns. They posted it on their Facebook pages with the caption “Homecoming 2014.” Their school promptly suspended them.
The students, Jamie Pereira and Tito Velez, were dressed up for homecoming at Bristol Regional Technical High School, in a Boston suburb. They were holding their airsoft guns. When school officials became aware of the photo, they handed the teens a 10-day suspension.
The kids say it is unfair and the school should not have punished them. “We took them with the airsoft guns because it’s our hobby, and we wanted to include them,” Pereira told New England Cable News.
The school superintendent, Dr. Richard Gross, said he had no problem with the guns, just the caption under the photo. “When you tie that to a school event, that’s something to be concerned about.” The caption has been removed since the kids were suspended. Gross added that the kids seemed to be intentionally trying to provoke a reaction.
“I guess the school took that as a threat, but we didn’t mean it in a threatening way,” Pereira said. The dance went on without any issues, but some students felt intimidated by the photo and were scared about what could happen.
There was no threat, the police were minimally involved, the kids were at a private residence: does this seem like a fair suspension?