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Archive for January 17th, 2010

This story from San Diego seems like a typical case of bureaucratic over-reaction. A school vice principal decided that a student’s science project may have been a bomb, so he set in motion events leading to a school evacuation. Without knowing further details, that decision may have been at least somewhat reasonable, but the part of the story that seems completely absurd is that the authorities (not clear whether the story is talking about school authorities or local cops, or whoever) want the student and parents to get counseling – even though it was determined that the science project was harmless and that a search of the home revealed nothing hazardous. I first saw this story on Instapundit and I fully agree that the student’s family should sue the school:

Students were evacuated from Millennial Tech Magnet Middle School in the Chollas View neighborhood Friday afternoon after an 11-year-old student brought a personal science project that he had been making at home to school, authorities said. …The school, which has about 440 students in grades 6 to 8 and emphasizes technology skills, was initially put on lockdown while authorities responded. Luque said the project was made of an empty half-liter Gatorade bottle with some wires and other electrical components attached. There was no substance inside. …A MAST robot took pictures of the device and X-rays were evaluated. About 3 p.m., the device was determined to be harmless, Luque said. Luque said the project was intended to be a type of motion-detector device. Both the student and his parents were “very cooperative” with authorities, Luque said. He said fire officials also went to the student’s home and checked the garage to make sure items there were neither harmful nor explosive. “There was nothing hazardous at the house,” Luque said. The student will not be prosecuted, but authorities were recommending that he and his parents get counseling, the spokesman said. The student violated school policies, but there was no criminal intent, Luque said. …Luque said both the student and his parents were extremely upset. “He was very shaken by the whole situation, as were his parents,” Luque said.

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