Each year, the district has a number of students who due to their personal hardships have not earned the minimum number of credits required to graduate. They are informed about their credits and graduation status throughout their senior year. These students do not participate in a graduation ceremony before successfully earning a diploma.
That’s just bad policy. Let the students walk, just don’t give them the diploma before they earn all the credits. Change the rule.
However, also from the statement:
As student body president, Stephen will be leading the students onto the field. He chose not to accept several other opportunities offered him to participate in the graduation ceremony in his role as a student leader.
Since you’ve asked this twice now, and apparently didn’t like my answer, let me ask you the same question I asked AP: What do you think you would have done in this situation, assuming that “let the student wear his kente over the robe” was not an option?
The (maybe/maybe not racist) authoritarians who overreacted towards the kid in this story were administrators, not teachers. I’m a leftist who’s a big fan of teachers, but in my experience administrators have a very strong tendency towards authoritarianism.
It sounds more like the school didn’t react well to this guy being a belligerent special snowflake.
There is nothing about this story that suggests it’s racial, all this looks like is a high school that was a little too anal about its graduation dress code.
Did you refuse to leave when asked? That seems to have been the trigger for getting the LEO involved.
I’ve been arrested twice for talking back to cops. My take-away from that is that cops don’t like smart-asses, not that cops are anti-Semitic. They might also be anti-Semitic, but that’s a different discussion.
Certainly not one that can be taken seriously. It is pretty easy to sit back in a comfy chair and lob criticism at people for trying to do their job under difficult circumstances.
The school staff repeatedly informed parents and students that only school-issued decorations would be permitted. Some of this (eg Hmong students not permitted to wear small jewelry items reflecting their culture) seems unnecessarily restrictive to me. However, judging from student interviews in the Sacramento Bee everyone but this student seems to have got the message…unless he too got the message but decided to make the graduation all about him.
If this incident triggered a discussion of commencement rules, that is a good thing. The president of the Elk Grove school board (who incidentally is not white) says that they will review policy, but has also reaffirmed that "there was no intent to discriminate against the student as the same rules applied to every graduate.”
With 30K high schools in the country I doubt it is hard to find examples which are hotbeds of authoritarian racism. From what I know of Cosumnes Oaks, it is not the example people seem to be looking for.
Enforcing racist rules is still racist. Race is not merely a function of the melanin content of one’s skin. Indeed, it’s far more about heritage. The student was ejected for displaying his. You can say he was ejected for not getting prior approval to display his heritage, and perhaps he was, but the rule requiring him to do so is still racist, and thus so is enforcing it. You can say the administrators were just enforcing the rules, and perhaps they were at that, but do you want to live in a world where those with power, however great or small it may be, enforce rules with automatic obedience, and then hide behind those rules like sniveling cowards? Do you want to live in a society where no one takes responsibility for our systemic legacy of racism, where we abdicate our moral duty to each other to change things, where it’s regarded as shameful to not pass the buck? And is that the example you want adults setting for the future’s heirs?
Lets be clear, the problem here isn’t the administrators in and of themselves. Don’t direct the outrage to them. Fire them and more like them will simply take their place. Ours is now a civilization-wide game of hot potato. So powerless and so meek we now feel in the face of the stymieing complexity of our world that we attack only the proximate agents of our cultural flaws and collective failures. We break off the end of the stick and leave the roots to spring forth another and another and another without end. Our justice is shallow, and so injustice overgrows us.
Direct instead that outrage toward a culture that rewards obsequiousness and punishes standing for what’s right and rational.