A third-grade boy in Michigan brought in 30 homemade cupcakes for his birthday – each topped with green plastic World War II figurine soldiers. The school secretary commented positively about them but then the mom got a different call.
“About 15 minutes later the school called my wife and told her they couldn’t serve the cupcakes because the soldiers had guns,” Casey Fountain, the boy’s father, told Fox News. “My wife told them to remove the soldiers and serve the cupcakes anyway — and I believe she may have used more colorful language…”
In a statement to local media, Schall Elementary School principal Susan Wright Susan Wright doubled down on her school’s bold stand against little green men that represent American soldiers.
“These are toys that were commonplace in the past,” Wright said. “However, some parents prohibit all guns as toys. In light of that difference, the school offered to replace the soldiers with another item and the soldiers were returned home with the student.”
“Living in a democratic society entails respect for opposing opinions,” the principal also said. “In the climate of recent events in schools we walk a delicate balance in teaching non-violence in our buildings and trying to ensure a safe, peaceful atmosphere.”
The story goes on to list a bunch of other similar situations where kids were suspended or parents called due to seemingly innocent behavior by the kids that was perceived as violent or suggesting violence by the school’s administration.
On our school’s 100th Day of school I saw a little fellow bring in a poster board with 100 green toy soldiers glued to it and I wondered if he would get into trouble. I’m not sure if he did but it wouldn’t have surprised me at all.
On a similar note, my 9-year-old was writing a school report and writing an art project about a historical non-fiction book. The book was about the bombing of Pearl Harbor and he was drawing bombs dropping on the fleet. I sent a note to the teacher to make sure that was OK. I’m not sure what else you would draw for the attack on Pearl Harbor. She never wrote back but he took it in and I didn’t get a call so I guess we were OK.
What are your thoughts on the cupcakes, 100th day of school or drawing Pearl Harbor? Would you have thought anything about sending in toy soldiers on cupcakes or otherwise? What would help school officials find a balance on this?