Perhaps the most over-rated concept ever devised by man is the concept of “zero tolerance” and seldom has that been better illustrated than in the case of 16 year-old Krystal Grayhorse.
Krystal left her personal diary at school in Dallas County, Missouri where it was found and read by school administrators who promptly suspended her because she had written that she had experimented with pot and had considered bringing some to school with her.
Tom Grayhorse, Krystal’s father said that his daughter was never found in possession of any drugs and that she had not been tested for drugs, the school suspended her in accordance with a “zero tolerance” policy which calls for a suspension for merely mentioning an illegal drug.
Grayhorse agrees that what his daughter wrote was cause for concern, but that no one knows for sure if it was actually true. It could be that she wrote entirely from her imagination.
Krystal was initially suspended on May 9, for 10 days but that was soon extended to include the rest of 2014. Having already missed the end of her Junior year Krystal’s grades have fallen and her father worries that unless the school allows her to return before the beginning of 2015 she will have no hope of graduating with the rest of her class next spring.
“I was really frustrated,” Grayhorse told the Springfield News Leader last week. “I thought when school started, they’d wake up.”
The official paperwork detailing Krystal’s offense lists “possession of a controlled substance” as the reason for the suspension.
“Her ‘possession’ constitutes writing something?” Tom Grayhorse asked. “That is the alleged possession?”
The school has defended its decision saying that Grayhorse is not telling the whole story although they refused to elaborate, ironically, citing “privacy” issues.
As always in these cases of overreaction, Dallas County Superintendent, Robin Ritchie, defended the decision saying that her hands are legally tied and that she is bound by the “zero tolerance” rules to impose and uphold the punishment.
Krystal is not alone in falling victim to these rigid rules. A 16 year-old student in Summerville High School in Summerville, South Carolina was not only suspended last month for writing a fictional story detailing how he shot his neighbor’s pet dinosaur with a gun, he was also arrested and charged with disorderly conduct!
Krystal’s father continues to appeal his daughter’s punishment and hopes that she will be able to graduate on time.
Watch a report about the incident from OzarksFirst: