Too much cheering = no diploma

Darren isn’t the only one annoyed by yahoo-ing family members at graduation ceremonies.

In Cincinnati, a graduate was denied his diploma because of too much cheering by family and friends. He’ll have to perform 20 hours of community service — or get family members to do it — before the school will release his diploma.

A South Carolina mother was arrested for disorderly conduct when she cheered for her daughter. School officials had warned before the ceremony that people cheering or screaming would be booted. At least the penalty — a $225 fine — will be borne by the offender, not the student.

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  1. With respect to Darren, this is one of the most ridiculous things I’ve ever heard. This has to be some right wing joke. Don’t cheer your kid for his success? I hope the Cincy school get sued into submission.

    • Yes, because the Cincy schools have such deep pockets. I agree that the school district over reacted; this young man was popular enough to justify halting the ceremony just for him. Who cares about the graduate that followed–did you catch his name? If the next family can’t match the noise level, to h*** with them. But let’s not compromise even though the school district has offered a reasonable one.

      It was 22 seconds from the time Anthony Cornist’s name was read until James Colter’s name was read the second time. In my graduating class of 200, that would have equaled an extra 73 minutes.

      Is that ok with you, Mark? You think that’s ok to most of the families present?

    • Mark–would you feel the same if the people hooting and hollering for their kid, who walked immediately before yours, made it so you couldn’t hear *your* kid’s name called?

      I’m asking for courtesy. Graduation are not English soccer matches. Celebrate afterwards, when it’s appropriate and you’re not going to ruin the event for someone else.

      By your logic, Mark, people should be shouting during weddings. I ask for <i<decorum, if only for 2 hours or so. Is that really so much to ask?

      On the other hand, going after the kid when the family yells is way out of bounds. The family should have been escorted out. Yes, I genuinely believe that.

  2. Obi-Wandreas says:

    The people who complain about this have apparently never seen an awards ceremony turned into a monster truck rally because the audience has no semblance of decorum or how to behave in a civilized society. This is full-blown, chair-pounding, shrieking and screaming. If you were standing outside and didn’t know what was going on, you would be calling riot police. And this is for 8th grade moving up ceremonies.

    It comes from a sense of entitlement – the complete incapacity to even consider the possibility that there might be other people present and that it is not, in fact, all about you. I applaud those administrators with the intestinal fortitude to push back against this trend.

  3. As stupid as the cheering is, this is worse.

  4. Michael E. Lopez says:

    I’m not sure it’s legal or moral to punish a student by adding graduation requirements for behavior on the part of a third party.

    Booting and fining the disruptor, on the other hand, seems allowable, if a little on the draconian side.

  5. In most school districts, the horse is out of the barn on this one. I can see no solution other than a) to have two ceremonies, one quiet and one joyful with students able to choose (not acceptable for reasons of community solidarity) ; or b) one ceremony, with a quiet part and a noisy part (what we have now). The thing that burns me is that most of the noise-makers (parents of grads) who themselves graduated from HS (i.e. over half, at least) were given respectful silence themselvfes when they graduated.

    • Michael E. Lopez says:

      Don’t be so sure of that. There was plenty of screaming at graduations in the 80’s.

      At least out here in California.

      Did this behavior track social class to a certain extent? Sure. But it existed.

  6. At our graduation, my job is to patrol the stands and collect air horns from people that sneak them in and blow them when names are read out. No matter how many times they are told not to bring them in, they do. It’s annoying and disrespectful for the rest of the graduates. Like Norm said, the following names can’t be heard. I wish I could kick them out, but we are told to just take the horns. The people around are grateful that we are trying to control the noise level too.

    On a side note, I generally collect about 5 horns a graduation. Keep in mind I am covering maybe a 5th or 4th of one side of the stadium.

  7. So — if I cheer for the child of my wife’s asshole boss, will the child not be allowed to graduate? Not bad. That would only be the beginning what the asshole boss deserves.

    • If we no longer have rules for and an expectation of decency and decorum in these scenarios, then America’s “social contract” no longer has solid standing and an every-man-for-himself attitude will slowly evolve, as you describe here. (I use the male noun advisedly–in such a scenario, the women will pay the heaviest price, I think.) Ironically, in such a scenario the laws of The State will become increasingly petty and punitive in an attempt to maintain the social contract that has become unmoored. It’s a downward spiral, and we’re trapped in it.