Student suspended for Twitter budget ‘riot’

After the Cicero-North Syracuse school district budget was rejected by voters, students debated possible budget cuts on Twitter at #shitCNSshouldcut. The hashtag’s creator, high school senior Patrick Brown, was suspended for three days, reports the Syracuse Post-Standard. He’d called for cutting the executive principal’s job.

“I was called down to the office and told I was being suspended for harassment of teachers, which no harassment was ever committed,” Brown said. “I proved them wrong and instead they suspended me for cellphone use in class and disrupting the education process because the trend I started created a social media riot.”

Brown admits using his cellphone in class. But he doesn’t think that’s why he was suspended. “It’s wrong that I can’t express my opinion on Twitter without being punished,” Brown said. “They didn’t like our opinions, but that doesn’t mean we can’t express them.”

A lacrosse player, Brown said he’s never received a detention or any other disciplinary action at school.

When word of the suspension spread, someone created #FreePatBrown to discuss freedom of speech. Let’s hope that doesn’t start another social media riot. We wouldn’t want high school students discussing school policy and budget priorities.

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  1. Crimson Wife says:

    Does the school normally hand out 3 day suspensions for texting in class? If not, sounds like he is being targeted as a whistleblower.

  2. Richard Aubrey says:

    We used to presume–we now presume while we used to know for sure–that the adults were smarter and better educated than the students.

  3. cranberry says:

    What in the world is a “social media riot?” Can we translate that into, “discussing online solutions to school budget problems which prioritize extracurricular activities rather than administrative positions?”

  4. Per the USSC Tinker decision, I suspect that the school district is going to get the crap sued out of it. This wasn’t a disruptive issue to the school in any way, shape, or form.

    The fact that some idiot administrators got their underwear riding up into the unknown is testament to the fact that the schools don’t want to produce educated individuals, but rather a bunch of mindless drones who obey the will of the collective (aka the BORG).

    The fact that he’s a senior should be exploited, so that when he does graduate, he can go to a school board meeting and really rip the school trustees and the administration a new one (after he gets his diploma, he can speak his mind, and there ain’t a thing the school district or state can do about it).

    Zero tolerance == Zero Common Sense

  5. An Educated Individual says:

    God forbid we should actually teach high school students how to think and express themselves! What is this contry’s educational system coming to? We can’t have students stating an opinion!? Especially not an opinion critical of the school administration!

    Then again, if the administration was actaully capable they would see this as a success instead of a threat and would invite the student in question to present and discuss his vews in a more constructive forum.

  6. Mike in Texas says:

    Perhaps if he hadn’t used a profanity this story might be different.

  7. An Educated Individual says:

    How can anyone more mature than the average ten year old refer to anything on twitter as a [violent] riot? A joke maybe, but a “riot?”

  8. Richard Aubrey says:

    “against authority”.
    Lexington and Concord? Civil rights movement?
    Jeez, if the long march hasn’t been obvious, it is now.