Cutting class, going to prom

Students at a Chicago high school were warned they’d have to sit out prom if they let detentions pile up. Fifteen of 180 students ignored the warning. But they went anyhow. From the Chicago Sun-Times:

Jones College Prep Principal Don Fraynd thought he was giving his students a valued lesson in responsibility when he barred 15 seniors who had racked up anywhere from 50 to 300 unserved detentions each from prom.

What he got was a lesson in politics, when the students held a protest, their parents blitzed the Board of Education with complaints, and the board reversed him, allowing the chronically late and class cutters to go to the ball.

“My biggest concern in terms of the reversal is the take-home message for these kids, and for the other kids who have behaved so well,” said Fraynd, a first-year principal at the top magnet school.

Students were warned they had to start making up detentions to attend prom. Some did. Others blew off the warning.

“Everybody was upset because they spent all their money getting suits and limos and all of that,” said Remon Miller, 18, who said he had 302 after-school detentions and 102 Saturday detentions to serve.

Well, the kid has a point. He’s obviously been allowed to ignore detentions for years — you can’t pile up 404 detentions in just one school year — and suddenly he’s told he has to play by the rules. No wonder he thought the warning was meaningless. And, thanks to the school board, he was right.

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  1. I remember an unserved detention being grounds for suspension in high school…

    And no wonder schools have weak pricipals… The school boards have weak principles…

  2. The Board of Education is usually staffed with enough wimps that the end result is students can get away with anything if they whine and complain about it.

    I suspect the parents (if you can call them that) of these LOSERS were the same way when they attended school. Where does a KID who has 400+ detentions to serve even belong in school, that’s the equivalent of 2.25 school years, based on a 180 day school year.

    In my opinion, these kids should have their little butts kicked clear off of campus, and if their parents start whining, the district should file a lawsuit against them for being idiots.

  3. Walter Wallis says:

    I assume the principal told the board to shove it, quit and went back into the Army. Any other course and he was just as bad as the board.
    Of course, my attitude is part of the reason I have not received a paycheck since 1975.

  4. Cousin Dave says:

    I’ve criticized administrators for not backing teachers in discipline matters. Here’s an administrator trying to do the right thing, but he in turn gets undercut by the board. Sometimes the fish does indeed rot from the head down.

  5. And then there was the case I read this weekend about 4 (?) senior couples who got lost finding the off campus country club(?) where the Senior Prom was being held and got there 15 minutes late only to be locked out. One parent went to see what the issue was, talked to the principal and tried to get the kids admitted but to no avail. I concur that while it was clear that the doors closed at a certain time, the punishment of being denied admission is a bit steep for the offense, and that a better alternative might be administered after the fact. It did not appear that the kids were out drinking or other such behavior – but honestly had difficulty finding the location (compared to ancient times when I was in school and it was held in the gym – unfortunately for us non-jocks, we all knew where that place was).


  6. jones student says:

    actually those were the detentions he racked up for the senior year alone.

  7. Just another example of why the public schools have gone to h*ll in a handbasket.

    A similar situation happened here, where the kids who were suppose to “graduate” from 8th grade into freshman year high school, were told that they needed to maintain at least a 1.75, yes you read that right a 1.75 GPA or they wouldn’t be allowed to “walk” with their class. Please note, its NOT that they wouldn’t be allowed to move on into the next grade with that pathetic GPA, just that they wouldn’t be able to “walk” on the stage.

    Well, predictably, several of the youngsters just couldn’t live up to that lofty goal of 1.75 GPA. In fact, I believe one of them had a GPA of 0.85, and people, these kids were not handicap in any way, shape or form.

    However, the bad news doesn’t stop there. The little darlings whined when they barred from the “walk” and their parents raised a fuss about how this was crushing their self-esteem. So, you bet, those little sweethearts got to walk.

    Add this to the new way of grading that has come into vogue – if you get the answer right or wrong holds only a small amount of weight. The factor that they are REALLY placing emphasis on is, “how Johnny feels” when he wrote his answer. No kidding, he can say 2 + 2 = 5, but if he felt good about his answer he gets a 90% on that assignment.

  8. Cousin Dave says:

    Mike, I’ve seen lots of cases of senior slide in my time, but this is the first time I’ve ever heard of 8th-grade slide. What is this graduating from 8th grade business, anyway? Are we going to have to have “graduation” ceremonies for every grade now?

  9. Mike from Oregon says:

    Cousin Dave –

    Around here the K-12 system is busted up into 3 catagories. K-5, then middle school which is 6,7,8 and then four years of high school. Please note, that is on the public school side of the ledger, on the private school side of the ledger its K-8, and high school (public school used to have only the two breaks, but then “advanced teaching methods” came up with reasons to build more schools).

    So around here both in the public and private schools, the move from 8th grade to high school is celebrated. Graduation from high school is still a big deal too.

  10. A middle school principal in a low-income neighborhood asked parents not to rent limos for graduating 8th graders or spend a lot of money on clothes or parties. He believed that many students didn’t expect to graduate from high school (or make it to the junior prom) so they were turning middle school graduation into a big, expensive party.

  11. The education profession just isn’t respected like it used to be…

    I have so many stories that I have accumulated in my 14 years of teaching of parents siding with their child and not believing the teacher’s side of the story. One that sticks in my mind is a little girl at a private school caught cheating on a test. She had the answers written on the palm of her hand. The teacher has two other adults validate the crib notes were there, then sent the darling home with a reprimand. The mom called the school and had the audacity to say, “Are you sure she did it, because she says she didn’t, and there’s nothing written on her hand now.” Duh!

    Because of previous run-ins with parents over dress code, our admins do not enforce dress code like they should. Kids are running around with clothing that is waaaay too tight or exposes waaay to much skin. Teachers don’t send them to the office because nothing is done by the admins. And the problem just gets worse. If administrators are running scared and can’t enforce the rules, what are we as teachers to do? What message are we sending to our students?

  12. “Are you sure she did it, because she says she didn’t, and there’s nothing written on her hand now.” Duh!

    Lol these parents are unbeatable.


  1. Hube's Cube says:


    Joanne Jacobs has some intriguing posts up. One asks how good, qualified teachers can be made to remain in the schools that need them most. I especially liked the reader comments since these usually cut through any pretense of PC….