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Pa. judge: No expulsion for kindergarten touching

Published: Mon, June 13, 2011 @ 3:39 p.m.

PHILADELPHIA (AP) — A judge has overturned a kindergartner’s expulsion from a Philadelphia charter school for touching his teacher on the thigh.

Common Pleas Judge Paul Panepinto concludes the 6-year-old was merely trying to comfort his teacher after she said her legs hurt. The Legal Intelligencer first reported on the May 23 ruling.

Panepinto concludes that the First Philadelphia Charter School for Literacy abused its discretion. He says the teacher testified she gives hugs in the classroom, and could not define “inappropriate touching.”

The boy had been suspended three previous times, but the judge weighed only the final incident.

The family’s lawyer says he is now doing well in private school.

A lawyer for the school says the case is in mandatory mediation and will move to Commonwealth Court if it’s not resolved.


1NilesOhio(986 comments)posted 5 years ago

Zero tolerance = zero common sense.

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2mark(60 comments)posted 5 years ago

NilesOhio: Exactly. Our governments (federal, state, and local) wouldn't be experiencing such severe budgetary issue if we weren't wasting tax payer dollars prosecuting 6-year-olds.

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3mommaof2(25 comments)posted 5 years ago

This is the stupidest thing ever! What kindergartener knows anything about inappropriate touching or sexual harassment? NilesOhio - I agree - zero tolerance goes too far! Let's get some common sense - look at the situation and realize we have a sensitive child here. Now lets reprimand him for that and teach him that sensitivity is no good! Geez-o-pete!

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4redeye1(5612 comments)posted 5 years ago

mommaof12 That is not politically correct today. this is what the people wanted, they want everyone and I mean everyone prosecuted for these minor offenses no what their age is.

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5Bplus(103 comments)posted 5 years ago

Wow. Just wow. I used to be a preschool teacher when I was like 20, and I'm also a male. I've had young kids ask me for hugs or give me hugs when they wanted some form of comfort. There is a line, especially being a male in the teaching industry. However, this is kind of opposite...and this child did NOTHING wrong. He basically mimicked adult behavior, human behavior, by comforting his teacher. Who cares if he rubbed the teachers leg; it's not like he rubbed her nether regions and said "oh mrs. so so, meet me after class and I'll show you how a real man comforts a lady". lol... what a waste of time, money, and effort to even bother with this "case". At least the kid has a heart and was trying to comfort someone he probably admires. Boo to this story, boo.

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