Shame on Who?

As the school year is approaching to an end, some policies should be taken under consideration to change for the upcoming year. One of these policies includes the requirement of students who are in “On Campus Suspension” to wear bright, orange vests.

Many students who act out in school do so for attention, whether it be the desire to make classmates laugh or possible lack of attention at home. The vests draw more eyes towards OCS students, which they may enjoy. This encourages some students to continue to act out for attention; it does not improve their behavior.

Another issue with the vests is poor sanitation. Students who have worn them claim the garments are not washed and smell horrific. Inappropriate behavior and actions should indeed result in consequences, however, these consequences should not include forcing students to put on an odorous, unclean vest. Not only is it unethical, it could also risk the spread of germs which might cause teachers and students to catch a virus or sickness.

The school officials’ reasoning is logical with regard to the prevention of the disappearance of students who try to slip away when outside of the OCS classroom. However, there are many other techniques teachers could use to distinguish students in OCS from other students, such as posting a daily list of students in OCS for teachers to be aware of or simply ensuring a closer eye is kept on them.

Often times, students are not placed in OCS due to extreme offenses. Some are sent after a few tardies, leaving campus to buy lunch, or a disagreement with a teacher. These are all minor issues, however the vests are not. Students should not be treated as criminals in jail for a slight altercation with a school rule.

The bottom line is these garments do not possess any positive purposes except to serve as a tracking device. Parents, teachers, and students should respectively urge school officials to remove this disciplinary tool.