Teen Suspended From School For Posting Photo Of Packed Hallways
A 15-year-old student was suspended from school for five days after posting a photo of her school’s packed hallway.
Hannah Watters is one of many students in the US to have returned to school recently despite concerns for their health following the ongoing pandemic. One school in Indiana had to shut its doors just hours after reopening after a student tested positive for the virus, proving how quickly it can spread.
While schools across the country have said they would do their best to implement social distancing measures, from the looks of some photos shared on social media, this hasn’t been the case.
Hannah, a student at Georgia’s North Paulding high school, shared a photo of the school’s crowded hallway on Twitter.
Along with the picture she wrote:
Day two at North Paulding High School. It is just as bad. We were stopped because it was jammed. We are close enough to the point where I got pushed multiple go to second block. This is not ok. Not to mention the 10% mask rate.
The picture has since been liked thousands of times, but also got Hannah suspended from school. Following her suspension, her mother Lynne Watters filed a grievance with the school. Lynne told The New York Times: ‘I expressed my concerns and disagreement with that punishment.’
Hannah spoke to Buzzfeed News about her suspension and explained the school’s reasoning for it. The 15-year-old said: ‘The policies I broke stated that I used my phone in the hallway without permission, used my phone for social media, and posting pictures of minors without consent.’
Hannah wasn’t the only one to have taken pictures inside the school; other photographs have also surfaced on social media.
Despite supposedly breaking the schools policies, Hannah announced today, August 7, that her suspension had been lifted.
The teenager tweeted:
This morning my school called and they have deleted my suspension. To everyone supporting me, I can’t thank you enough. If I’m not responding it’s because my life has been somewhat crazy the past few days. Once again thank you.
Superintendent of the Paulding County School District, Brian Otott, responded to the viral photographs.
In a letter, he wrote:
You may have seen a photo of a crowded high school hallway that is circulating widely on social media and has been reported by several national news media outlets. This photo appears to be from North Paulding High School. Some in the news media and some individuals on social media are this photo and using it without context to criticize our our school reopening efforts.
Otott then proceeds to try give context to the photograph stating that, in a school of over 2,000 students, crowded hallways are likely to occur during class changes. While it’s evident this doesn’t maintain any kind of social distancing, Otott claims the school’s current class changing schedule complies with Georgia Department of Education’s Path to Recovery for K-12 Schools.
Class changes at the high school are a challenge when maintaining a specific schedule. This is an area we continue to work on in this new environment to find practicable ways to further limit students from congregating.
There’s been an ongoing debate in the country on whether students should be made to wear masks at school and, if they’re going to continue to be this close to one another, they definitely should be.
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CreditsThe New York Times
The New York Times