Tuesday, October 06, 2015

12 year old black boy suspended for staring at white girl, which is apparently still something that happens in America in 2015.

Courtesy of Fox 19: 

A 12-year-old boy is suspended from school for 'staring' at another student. It happened in September of 2014 at St. Gabriel Consolidated School in Glendale. The parents filed suit in Hamilton County Common Pleas court to try and get the suspension erased claiming the school didn’t give their son due process. 

A Judge denied the claim, which means as of now the suspension of the 12-year-old stands. “The perception is he intimidated her,” said Candice Tolbert, his mother. 

“My son stared at a girl who was engaged in a staring game,” she said. “She giggled the entire time,” she said from her Liberty Township home. 

Court paper shows the female student "felt fearful.” The incident happened on a Monday. The school was notified by the girl’s parents on Tuesday. They allegedly notified the Tolbert’s son on Tuesday, but did not tell the Tolbert’s until Wednesday. By that time, their son had already written an apology letter, which the parents said they were unaware of until notified by the school. 

In the letter, the 12-year-old wrote, “I never knew she was scared because she was laughing.” It also read, “I understand I done the wrong thing that will never happen again. I will start to think before I do so I am not in this situation.”

When asked if she considered the actions of the school and the judge to be racist, the boy's family said they are not ready to "pull out the race card,"

Well here let me do it on their behalf.

There is NO fucking way that a white 12 year old boy in Ohio would be suspended for staring at a classmate during a staring contest. So of course this is racist!

In fact the white kid could have been standing on a desk staring down at the girl with one finger pointed at her as if to curse her for all eternity and he still would not have missed a single day of class.

And reading that letter from the boy saying that he knows he "done wrong" and it "will never happen again" is heartbreaking.

So even if this young man goes back to school, will he ever feel able to look at his white classmates, or girls ever again?

I think this family has quite a case for a discrimination lawsuit on their hands, and I hope they sue not only the school district but this judge for everything they have.


  1. Anonymous4:58 AM

    I agree with everything you said, but at the top of the story, it says it happened in September of 2014. Are they just now suspending him? Or is the story a year old?

    1. The suspension is a year old, the court case attempting to have it erased from the boy's record was just decided.

  2. Anonymous6:13 AM

    Well here, let me give you some clarity about teenagers staring. It could have been pure intimidation by the boy or it could have been a harmless, mindless game they were both engaged in and some adult put a different spin on it. Unless you were there, don't pull out the race card. I have taught teenagers for 40 years. None of us have enough info to make a judgment either way on this.

    1. Anonymous7:09 AM

      A twelve year old is not a teenager.

    2. Really? You want others to withhold the race card because there might be more info we need to determine racist actions against this 12 year old child? Should we then filter out all the solid evidence we have witnessed over and over again of racism across the country? This is not an isolated incident. I'm white. It's painfully clear to me it's grown in frequency and alarmingly more blatant over the past several years. This country has turned into a gun culture dominated by white males who bully the general population backed by the NRA. Those opposed to gun control are often times racist and justify racism. If the black race in this country were the mass shooters you can bet your ass congress would've locked them up, denied any of them access to guns and advocated hangings on the nearest trees. Our country is under siege by white racists.

  3. Anonymous6:15 AM

    And yes, white kids get suspended for this at my school in CA all the time. So let's be clear, none of us have enough info. That being said, no I do not think most black students are treated the same as white, and by not treated the same, I mean they are more often treated unfairly. In this case, we don't really know what happened.

    1. Anonymous7:11 AM

      Kids get suspended all the time for staring at other kids at your school? Do you work at Kafka Middle School?

    2. Really?! You need more info on this incident? Not sure what additional info is needed that would justify his suspension. This is a 12 year old boy and he thought they were playing a game - his apology noted how she was laughing along with him. Sounds to me like her parents created the drama over an innocent child's game and they're probably straight up racists. This young boy will carry this with him for life. Blatant racism and reminds me of the times when a black man could/would be hanged for "staring" at a white woman. Even if he didn't.

    3. Anonymous9:33 AM

      When it is clearly an act of intimidation, yes they get suspended. Yes, it may be racism. No, we as readers don't really know. I guess I'm more objective than some of you because I live with this crap in the classroom every day. Grow up.

    4. Anonymous9:39 AM

      You are taking his word after the fact that he thought it was a game. No proof. Her laughing could have been nervous laughter from being intimidated. Her parents may have created drama, the girl may have created it, or it may be real. "...they're probably straight up racists." gives away your bias. "This young boy will carry this with him for life. Blatant racism...." You don't know that. You weren't there. You don't know if this boy had targeted this girl or others in the past. He may be totally a victim or he may not. You absolutely do not have enough information to make that judgment. You are talking totally from emotion.

    5. Anonymous10:15 AM

      "[C]reated drama" is a very interesting and familiar phrase...

    6. Anonymous2:29 PM

      It was a staring game, between the two of them, and the school said HE intimated her. So my question is, why wasn't SHE suspended for staring at, and intimidating him.

    7. Anonymous2:36 PM

      STOP making shit up. I don't believe for one second that white kids are suspended for staring at Black kid.

    8. 9:39 - maybe I AM talking from emotion. Let's go with your opinion regarding emotion versus fact. Starting with the need to ask more questions so we have enough information to determine if the punishment fit the crime......Oh, wait! We can't do that since the school suspended him and his parents went to court to challenge it - they didn't believe he was given due process. Here's where we obtain more info without emotion.....Oh, wait!......the court denied their request and upheld the suspension. Well then! No emotion, no answers and a 12 year old child absolutely won't feel shame or humiliation over his suspension as he grows up. No reason for a black child to feel bad over a silly child's game.

    9. Yes, white kids get suspended.

      Yes, sometimes for stuff that seems minor like staring, dropping a book, sharpening pencils, chewing gum.

      All seems minor on the surface.

      But there are circumstances where it escalates into disruption of the classroom learning process and defiance of the teacher's directions.

      When you have 36 bodies in the room (and yeah, I'm talking 6th grade here.) you can't have some little dipshit grinding the pencil sharpener every time you start a sentence.

      I had a fistfight complete with rolling around on the floor happen in my classroom because one kid looks at another kid "funny". "He looked at me funny." was what he said started it.

      I'm sure that's not what he told his parents. By the time they get home they've concocted a story to make them all the innocent victim and either the other kid or the teacher is at fault, to blame, a liar, a bigot or a racist.

      By the time they're 12 they should have learned that no means no, that there is a time and place for everything and the classroom is not a playground.

      I'll also say there is more to this story than meets the eye if this got back to the parents. Why would the girl go home and report she felt intimidated? Usually this stuff ends with "Both of you knock it off and get back to work or you'll do your work after school." and that is the end of it.

      It wasn't.

      So there is more here than we know.

      I'll also say no matter what the race, in an altercation such as this, the boy will be suspended before the girl is. So this may not be so much racial inequality as gender inequality.

  4. TwoBlueJays7:43 AM

    This story broke my heart. It's racism pure and simple. I live in Ohio. You can throw a rock in any direction and hit a racist. Any news story that even has a brief mention of someone of color, but particularly African American, the comments section veers immediately into racist land. It's ugly when directed at adults but to pick on kids is fucking despicable.

    1. TwoBlueJays - I absolutely agree with you. It's a disgrace and breaks my heart to know this revolting treatment targets our innocent children. There are times I'm ashamed to be part of the white race.

  5. Clearly schools need to have staring rules akin to, say, the three second rule when food falls to the ground. Easy enough to enforce, as schools have security cameras that can capture those glances that becomes a stare.

    1. the three second rule when food falls to the ground

      Generally, any transfer of microorganisms happens during the milliseconds of impact.

    2. Anonymous2:53 PM

      Shut up Ted. Why do you have to be a know it all?

    3. Anonymous 2:53 PM wrote: Shut up Ted. Why do you have to be a know it all?

      Your comment does not reveal any sensitive information about you or about anybody else. Why do you have to shoot from concealment?

      Sorry if I've destroyed one of your cherished beliefs, BTW.

    4. Anonymous7:29 AM

      Ted. Nobody wants to listen to the rantings of an old man. Now go yell at some kids to stay off your lawn.

  6. What year is this? Did someone from the 1950's reach in and snatch us from 2015?? This story is heartbreaking and angers me even more. Anyone that dares to deny racism is alive and well should be forced to wear an overlay of African American skin for one week. Hell, even one day! I have friends that I consider educated and informed who've shocked me over past several years with their comments and blatant racist behaviors. If we don't protect this 12 year old boy, we've hit a bottom even worse than where we were in the 50's.

  7. Anonymous8:27 AM

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  8. Anonymous11:27 AM

    The way the apology letter was written, one would think the girl was physically assaulted by the 12 year old boy.

    Thank goodness the boy didn't whistle at the girl, who know what could have happened?!


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  10. Anonymous12:03 PM

    I always think things cannot get worse until I read something like this! What a crying shame!

    The black boy and white girl only have a difference of being different colors. They are the same inside though as to having blood that runs through their veins and being normal and curious about others that walk on this planet.

    It makes me sad to see the discrimination displayed in this case which is occurring in full force STILL across our nation! Isn't it OK for a fat boy to look at a thin girl? Or a retarded boy looking at a normal girl? I could go on and on.

    Treat others as you want to be treated is my thought!

    Discrimination is rampant and no different (in so many cases!) as it was back in the 1950's! Truly makes me sad!

  11. Until you teach in a classroom you have no idea how this sort of game undermines learning in the classroom.

    This Mother should count herself lucky it was only staring. I dare say the referral listed "defiance" as I'm sure both parties were told to stop and someone didn't follow the teacher's directions.

    I wrote a referral for pretty much the same thing.

    This is how the conversation went.

    Why did you punch him?

    student 1: Because he kicked me.

    Why did you kick him?

    student 2: Because he took my backpack.

    Why did you take his backpack?

    student 1: because he took my pencil.

    Why did you take his pencil?

    student 2: Because he looked at me funny?

    He LOOKED at you funny? You are both being suspended from school for three days for fighting because he LOOKED AT YOU FUNNY?

    By that time, they realized how stupid the entire incident was and how the choices they made escalated into three days suspension and a referral in their permanent record for fighting.

    I had to call security to break them up. I had this conversation as I was writing both referrals and waiting for the Vice Principal to come and get them.

    Oh, yeah. Fun times.

    Stuff like this always sounds so innocent and minor when you read it.

    They all dropped their textbooks on the floor at the same time.

    Popping gum, a substance that is banned from all schools.

    Grafitti on desks. Carved into them even.

    Harassment. I had one boy organize a third of my class to call a little girl "roach girl" for months until her best friend stayed after school and finally told me what was going on. That resulted in my getting a written reprimand from my principal because I dared to tell the kid to stay after school. He threatened me if I did I'd be sorry. His mother got to the principal before I did.

    Oh yeah. I don't miss teaching at all.


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