Teacher Suspended for Showing Gardening Tools to Class

by Sarah TheHealthyHomeEconomist April 25, 2013

toolsDoug Bartlett, a veteran teacher with an upstanding record of 17 years, has filed a lawsuit against the school district of Chicago for suspending him without pay after giving a lesson on gardening tools to his second grade students.

The incident took place on August 8, 2011 at Washington Irving Elementary School.

Mr. Bartlett recently filed suit on April 17, 2013 saying that he suffered humiliation and embarrassment as a result of his reprimand.

The “hazardous” tools in question were pliers, screwdrivers and wrenches that only the teacher handled. The tools were kept in a locked toolbox high on a shelf out of reach before and after the gardening lesson.

The district says that Mr. Bartlett exhibited negligence in supervising the children and for “possessing, carrying, storing, or using a weapon”.  He was subsequently suspended without pay for 4 days.

Mr. Bartlett’s lawsuit claims the suspension violated his Fourteenth Amendment right to due process as he asserts that there was never a full hearing on the incident.  Further, he was disciplined without ever having the opportunity to plead his case.

wrenchesAccording to the Rutherford Institute which is representing him, Mr. Bartlett is seeking damages and requesting the suspension be expunged from his teaching record.

It is important to have electronic records in order as the charge of possessing a “weapon”, in this case gardening tools, has the potential to prevent Mr. Bartlett from seeking employment elsewhere.

The incident is yet another example of an over the top reaction by school officials demonstrating poor judgment and a gross lack of common sense.

A related story occurred in the Fall of 2012 when the Vice Principal of a California school suspended a boy for bringing kombucha in his lunchbox.  With no parent or guardian present at any time, the boy was interrogated in the school office by school administration and a police officer and was ultimately suspended for 5 days for “violating” the school’s drug and alcohol policy. No tests were ever performed on the beverage which is able to be legally purchased by minors at local stores.

 

Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist

Sources:  Teacher who showed garden tools to second grade students is suspended without pay for bringing ‘weapons’ to class

Teacher Who Showed Garden Tools to Second Grade Students is Suspended Without Pay

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Comments (352)

    • Are you kidding!!!!! Not only have we lost common sense with regard to schools, we lost common sense PERIOD!!! and I’m sorry to say that I truly believe that something much more terrible is happening to the people in this country. I’m sure many will think me a nut and I am not, I’m just a regular person with a regular family, married a long time, two grown kids, hard working, etc., but I sincerely believe that as we reject, deny, get rid of, and disrespect the name of God and His Son, Jesus Christ, we become more and more immoral, walk around blind and ignorant to all sense, and in the end, God is taking His hand of protection and His hand of blessing off of this country. We are falling apart, we are moving into more and more chaos which will lead us eventually into total destruction. We the people are voting in these same people who do not want God in our country, we are being hood-winked by their lies and we’re buying it. I can only hope and pray that the masses will wake up before it is too late and we’ve fallen so far that there is no turning back from the pit we are falling into. Don’t believe me? Read up on the rise and destruction of Hitler; see how the people were lulled into evil; see how very close the world was to being totally taken over by the evil; remember who we were then as a country – a strong power, Judeo Christian Nation, with God behind us to help us be the power that helped lead and overcome the evil. We are no longer that country, who then will be able to overcome the evil that is upon us?

      Reply
      • Norway, the happiest country in the world, according to Forbes, only 66% believe in God. The second happiest, Denmark, is 75%. Sweden is 5th, and just 18% believe that there is a God, and only 17% say that religion is an important part of their daily life. And that just means that at a minimum, they believe in some kind of God, and are not necessarily Christians. They all rank among the top 6 in Legatum’s Personal Freedom index. God in the schools is not the answer to common sense or personal freedom.

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        • What’s that got to do with the article? Athiests obsess over the Anti-God. Most of the Athiest movement is run by Satanists. In fact, many Satanists run Christian groups too. They are known as Anti-Christians or Anti-Christs.

          Aside, schools really need to get their act together. As well, end the notion of “compulsory education.” Seriously, what are they really learning other than to be wards of the State?

          Reply
          • Don’t confuse Satanism with atheism or agnosticism. Very different. Lack of belief or uncertainty about God does not then mean that you do believe in Satan.

          • Joe, you are an idiot. First of all, atheism is the rejection of theism. Believing in the devil is the same as believing in god, it’s just that you root for the other side. It’s still theism. But that’s irrelevant, because Satanism is NOT the belief in the devil.

            Why is it that people like you are always the most ignorant? It’s a rhetorical question, by the way.

            The official cult of satanism is the believe in one’s self. Satanists do not believe in either god or the devil. This is because the word ‘satan’ is Latin for opponent, not some mythical red dude with a pitch fork. No matter how much I may disagree with them – they tend to be arrogant, self-centered and ego maniacal – they’re still more rational than people like you.

          • “What’s that got to do with the article?”
            Umm, Meg didn’t bring God into the discussion. Janet did. Though I believe in God, and not religion, I agree with Meg. Religion is not the answer. Blind obedience to “authority figures” is not an answer. If people choose to have faith, that’s great. Whatever works for you. The problem is with lack of virtue and morals. Religion does not have a monopoly on morality or virtue. ANYONE can be a good person, regardless of their faith. The problem in this country right now is that debauchery and stupidity are celebrated. We have a tyrant in office, but so-called “liberals” cheer him on. Bush was a tyrant too, and they all hated him, but now that we have a Democrat in office, it’s all of the sudden okay to trample on our civil liberties and waste trillions of dollars. The hypocrisy of both sides of the political spectrum is alarmingly. It’s this kind of blind obedience to the supposed 2 party system that has in the mess we’re in right now. Congress, as a whole, does not have our best interests at heart. There is no more system of checks and balances. People don’t care about the Constitution anymore, it’s not even taught in public schools. These are REAL problems. I couldn’t care less about the so-called “anti-Christ”. I have a deep respect for religion, though I don’t practice it, but it is not the solution to our current predicament. “God helps those who help themselves”, right? We have a duty to stand up for rights and to protect our Constitution for ourselves and for future generations. We need a new enlightenment. People are so dosed up and toxins from GMO’s, fluoride, hormones, pharmaceuticals, etc. and spend more time watching television than reading or learning their Constitution. We have no moral compass as a country anymore. Our president drone strikes civilians in other countries, and supposed anti-war/pacifist liberals cheer him on. There is a serious disease of hypocrisy and complacency right now in America. We need education, not religion. Religion can be part of it, for some people, but it is not the only answer.

        • You just said that in the two happiest countries in the world, 2/3 and then 3/4 of the people believe in God. That would make them the overwhelming majority. I’m not arguing for or against prayer in school but, your statistics are in contrast with your point. your argument makes no sense.

          Reply
        • @ Meg
          The Happy Planet Index on Wikipedia lists For the 2012 ranking, 151 countries were compared, and the best scoring country for the second time in a row was Costa Rica, followed by Vietnam, Colombia, Belize and El Salvador.
          As you noticed except for Vietnam, Catholic Christian countries. Norway was 29th.

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          • hi Greg,

            the indexes use very different basis of comparison. The Happy Planet focuses more on ecological footprint whereas the traditional indices focus more on GDP, healthcare, and other factors. No wonder this index produces different results than all of the others that I have looked at.

            BTW for those who have a strong belief in the military, Costa Rica has NO military. None. Just the police.

          • Greg,

            Anyway, the point that I was probably trying to make and possibly not well, is that the practice of religion is not really a factor in whether or not the citizens of a particular place are happy or unhappy (because after all, all the talk of rights etc., is in the pursuit of happiness, however that is defined for you, correct?) It appears that religious folk do not have the market cornered on a happy life which is why those of us who are not religious resent it being pushed onto us (in the schools, or wherever). And if you don’t think it’s being ‘pushed’ you’ve never examined it from a different point of view.

        • Hey Meg,
          They also report that “38% of all statistics are made up on the spot.”

          Hey Janet,
          I love your boldness for Jesus Christ. And, it is true that this nation has been blessed with God’s grace. I encourage you to trust in Him alone, not Americanism or even American-Christian ideals, but Him alone, His Word and His Spirit. Grace and peace to you as we trust in Him alone. – Blessed to be an American, but certainly not proud to be.

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          • Within those stats are that less than 30% believe in God, and the remaining believe that there is ‘some type of God’ (could be anything from the Norse Gods to Allah) and I would hazard to say that someone supporting that weak of a statement probably doesn’t incoporate religion into their daily life. The idea that bringing God back into the schools will cure all ails is ridiculous.

            Janet’s support of the ‘Judeo Christian Nation’ doesn’t exactly support the idea of religious freedom in the US either.

          • Meg, assuming your statistics are true, which came first? The chicken or the egg? Do you think maybe the lack of belief in a God comes from the suppression of learning about it in school? Do you see an agenda at all? If you think schools should be a place for learning and exploration, then why is God a forbidden subject or one that is treated with ridicule instead of open mindedness like any subject in school should be. Today they want kids to put condoms on bananas with open mindedness and be indoctrinated with all kinds of crap, but no discussions on God in school before the college level? If you are so liberal and tolerant, why no tolerance for this? That’s not logical (but they really don’t teach logic anymore either).

          • Rebecca,

            Because if you bring God into school, you cannot keep the focus to Christianity, otherwise you would be violating others’ religious freedom, unless they were allowed to opt out (as I understand they typically are in sex ed classes). This actually shows a lot of tolerance, because you are only viewing it from the Christianity point of view whereas I (and most likely the policy makers) are viewing it from the perspective of ALL religions, and not even just the main ones. How many morning prayers would you potentially be required to recite in order to cover all religions and not infringe on people’s rights? How many courses would have to be offered to cover EACH religion? And at the expense of what – literacy?

        • You are certainly welcome to your belief; I for one beg to differ with you. First of all we are not Norway, Denmark or any other country; we are suppose to be a World Leader and have been for over 200 years AND that was accomplished by people settling this country when they left another country that was persecuting them for religious belief, predominately Christianity. Then as this country grew, our Founding Fathers were mostly Christians, and many were Pastors or Ministers as well. This is how we got our laws and Constitution – all based on God and Christian morals! You need to delve in more deeply to really understand where and how this country came into being and why; how we have been throwing out our Christian morals and ethics in the last 50 yrs, especially the last 20-25 yrs and open your eyes to the correlation between that downward slide of following and looking to God with where we are today AND where we are headed according to many, many well read people in many different areas of business and acumen in this country. Follow the facts and you’ll realize the truth.

          Reply
          • I understand the facts, however you talk about ‘how it came into being and why’. You’re living in the past and when societies cling to the past and cannot adapt to the present, they die out and all empires eventually fall. If you want stay on top you have to figure out how to do that today, not how you did that 200 years ago.

          • Truth is timeless meg. It doesn’t matter if it came from 1000 years ago. Thank Jesus we have the truth in the King James Bible. People create their own problems and then blame God.

          • I am so sorry but you are truly showing your ignorance. I don’t think you have actually studied any ancient civilizations with that comment because it is practically the opposite of the truth of why ancient civilizations died out. Reverse what you said and there is the truth. I don’t even have time to do a write up on the Romans right now, just do some research. Did you know that homosexuality was widespread and accepted at the end of the Roman empire? That was a “change” from their original beliefs and it didn’t help them adapt. Their military became weak and they were conquered, never to rise again. Remind you of anything? Seriously! History just cycles over and over again and we are again in a cycle of decline and there are specific things that got us here, but some people refuse to see it and so we continue down…down. We have lost simple truths. The WAPF ideas are a simple truth about health that has been lost. Adapting hasn’t helped, it has hurt. It’s just made us sick off of corn syrup!

          • Yes, the Rome was eventually taken and the Empire fell. Why though? If they encountered forces more superior than theirs, was it because they clung to their tried and true methods and strategies which had worked in the past but eventually became predictable?

        • meg is a troll. ignore her. she obfuscates the issue that the school is calling a simple tool for gardening as a weapon. this is not the case since an object to be labeled as a weapon, like your hands, teeth, feet, phonebook, rolling pin etc must first be used in an act causing damage. This was not the case, yet this teachers suit is not such. It is for the districts violation of due process. They just said so, so it must be ok like the kings of old.

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          • How do you figure? According to the WHO, they are only the 35th highest on the list, Greenland is the highest by a huge margin.

          • But Meg, Norwegians are the happiest people in the world. If so, they should have the lowest suicide rate.

      • I am with Janet. There is no question pushing God out of the institutions of this country is the reason for all of our problems.

        There is a God. It would take multiple more times more faith that all of creation you see, the complexity and how it works together, happened because of some bang or something and then evolved. It just did not happen.

        Plus everyone knows there is a God because God shows Himself to everybody just like me and Janet and everyone else. He gives you the free-will to reject Him though because He loves you. There are no atheists. With consequences though as we are witnessing.

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      • You do know that Hitler was a devout Christian, right? The Third Reich was a religious war. They believed they were god’s chosen people, and sought to cleanse the rest of the world of its impurity.

        Religion breeds intolerance (denying equal rights to homosexuals and transgender people), hate (listen to Fox talk about Muslims; Muslim extremism; Crusades, the endless Israeli-Palestinian conflicts) and a sense of false superiority (I bet you believe YOUR religion is the “correct” one, and not Buddhism, Islam, Hinduism, Ancient Greek/Roman, Taoism, Wicca, Shinto, etc.). It fractures communities and divides neighbors even more than political differences. It is the rejection of logic and embracement of blind and impregnable devotion, regardless of how ludicrous said teachings may seem at face value.

        More religion in schools is most definitely NOT the answer.

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        • If HItler called himself a Christian that just means he was a liar. He obviously wasn’t living and acting as a Christian.

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          • I don’t think the majority of Christians are living and acting as Christians, maybe not to that extreme.

        • I’m sorry but you are very confused. Hitler CLAIMED to be a Christian to fool the masses, which worked! He was a master at deception and he was well known in the history books as a genius at deceiving through propaganda – sound familiar? He also has been quoted as saying, “tell the people the same lies long enough, and they’ll come to believe it” (and I could give you many present day examples of others doing that). Again I say, look into the history, the whole history, for taking one little thing you’ve heard and repeating it as the truth doesn’t bode well for you or work very well when debating a subject, nor does it tell the whole story. I Also disagree with you concerning religion breeding intolerance; history will reveal something entirely different to you if you read. The Third Reich was NOT about religion. Hitler was a maniacal sociopath, who was greedy for power & control and had some very strange ideas about killing anyone who was not “pure Aryan.” He wrote Mein Kampf which laid out his plans for transforming Germany into a society based on RACE; he hated the Jews because of race not religion . He targeted for extermination/ death any children or adults who were not perfect, who might have physical or developmental disabilities. Hitler also killed Jews, Poles, communists, homosexuals, Jehovah’s Witnesses, Christians who were against his cruelty and policies (he actually killed a million and a half Christians), and trade unionists, among others, basically, anyone who dared get in his way; I can’t give you the whole history lesson here but you can read it for yourself, which I would suggest you do if you really want to understand; it is a fascinating story, though sad, and unfortunately. Yes, “religions” which are man-made institutions, can many times be flawed to the point of grievous actions and sin – this is because man is inherently sinful and ,therefore, when left to his own devices (does not obey God) can do very bad things. However, please note, I never said the word “religion”, I said “God and His Son, Jesus Christ” who is sinless and a God creator who gave us His laws, commandments and a perfect blue print for living righteously in everything we do. I will also say that actually there has been more evil and intolerance by men who are not believers or followers of God and His Word. Again, look at history and I challenge you to prove that Judeo Christianity has killed more people. It appears to me by your words that you seem to like to make assumptions and operate mostly on emotion, unfortunately, in order to have logical thought, make rational decisions, and have a good grasp of truth, you must operate more on knowledge of facts,( with only a dash of emotion). So, that being said let me set you straight on your emotional comments of me – i do not follow any “man-made religion”, I am a follower of Jesus Christ as my Lord and Savior, who loved us (you too) so much that He freely GAVE His life for us all; He was the perfect sacrifice – no sin. I live and do my very best to follow God’s Holy Word, the Bible, with his help I am able to do this most of the time, but not always because I too am a sinner, a human. What really fractures communities and divides neighbors is greed, selfishness, thoughtlessness, lack of love, compassion, immorality, lack of ethics, lack of responsibility,believing lies so being at odds with truth, etc.; and last but certainly not least is NOT FOLLOWING GOD’S INSTRUCTION for right living. These are all weaknesses of men/humans, not God.
          In ending may I also tell you that I am respectful of whatever “religion or god” others may want to follow, as long as it does not keep me from following and obeying my Lord and Savior commands to me; encroach on or threaten me or my family. Like God, I would like that all could be saved and that none would perish and would be glad to speak with anyone about how to do that, but all have been given a choice, a free will to choose or reject the God Creator of all things and His Son who offers the free gift of eternal life and salvation by believing on Him. God teaches me to love all people no matter who they are and I do my best to do that but that doesn’t mean that He wants me to be a doormat or not have debates on important matters of God and men. I wish you sincere blessings and enlightenment of truth.

          Reply
          • @Janet – I’m sorry, but there’s just too much text. I read the last part and agree that people are free to believe in whatever they choose. This is exactly why teaching a specific religion in school is a bad idea. You have made my point for me.

          • I also feel like I should clarify: I did not imply that Hitler was a monster BECAUSE of Christianity. Throughout history, there have been monsters from every religion, and quite a few that were atheists, too.

            Nor am I saying that religion inherently teaches intolerance directly, it merely does so indirectly. People like to take advantage of holy teachings to further their own hatred and agenda (i.e. gay marriage and the Westboro “church”), the actual bible, while having a fair share of questionable content, especially the old testament (stoning women who cheat, barring multi-threaded clothes, calling shell-fish ‘abominations,’ etc.) generally teach kindness.

            However, regardless of what the original intent was, the fact that it’s being used for nefarious purposes is still a problem.

            Hitler counted himself as a Christian. Whether or not he understood what that meant is irrelevant. In future, you just might wanna go with a different example of evil, otherwise the irony is a little too strong.

          • Janet,

            The flaw in your logic is that (for me at least and others who are not religious) God and the Bible are most likely a concept made up by man to control the masses and for the purpose of power/greed. So your faith from others’ perspective here is based on a human-made concept and human written book.

        • Nullify, I encourage you to read up a bit more on Hitler. He was not a Christian, and he correctly perceived that fascism can’t be reconciled with the teachings of Christ about mercy, love, the meek inheriting the kingdom of God, etc. To Hitler, Christianity was at best a way to weaken Germany, and at worst a Jewish plot. If he was Christian, one has to ask why he supported efforts to bring back pre-Christian Germanic paganism as well.

          Reply
        • Just because Hitler called himself a Christian, it didn’t necessarily made him one just like you can sit in your garage and make rumbling noises all day hut that doesn’t make you a car.
          Btw don’t confuse being a believer(God, Christ, Buddha, Allah, etc. ) doesn’t make you Religious.
          Also you must remember or realize that the bill of rights was written to prevent or stop the government from infringing on our liberties and rights and not to control the citizens.

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        • SIGH. The phrase is WHOLE-heartedly. Honestly. Ho is a derogatory slang against women. The intelligence of people of the board is questionable, at best.

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          • oh, give us a break miss perfect! you’ve never made a typo mistake??? Wow, you must be a genius and super dextrous as well. On top of that, with txting and twitting and how we shorten and abbreviate our spelling, I’ll bet even you get confused sometimes; come on fess up.

          • Supports my point that we should spend more time and funding in school focusing on literacy and not on prayer and trying to make everyone from different religious groups happy.

      • Why do these issues always bring up religion as the answer and cure-all to these “problems”? Guess what, I’m just like you. Healthily adjusted and morally correct…I haven’t even received a speeding ticket! Guess what…I’m not Christian, I’m what you would call a Pagan. Bringing any one religion into the school system IS NOT going to resolve the issue. Slapping people upside the head would be much more efficient. Christians are not the only people with a moral compass authority. Understand that being American doesn’t mean being a Christian. Common Sense is Common Sense. Not Christian Sense. Not Buddhist Sense. And certainly not Satanist Sense.

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        • I agree WHOLE-heartedly with James. People who argue pro-Christian, God Blesses America nonsense don’t know enough about the distant history to actually make a fair comparison to “yesteryear”. Europe, America and Christians, all have a very checkered past.

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          • Do you know about history? Most of the people I’ve spoken to readily believe the things they have heard without question and rehash whatever they have heard and affirm it as fact and then they accuse us Christians of “believing everything we hear”. Seems hypocritical of those accusers.

        • I know, I totally agree. I don’t understand why Christians always claim the moral authority. Pick up a history book for goodness sake!

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      • I have to say that having god in our schools has absolutely nothing to do with it. What we are laking is common sense, respect and morals. That’s it. Stupidity is what’s wrong with our schools. Hitler was apparently raised catholic and look at what he did. The bible is rife with murder and rape. Should I mention the great flood? Please don’t spout that we need god!

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        • I’m not really trying to be a devil’s advocate (maybe a little bit), but where do you think morals originated from? A group of apes got together and decided to not kill each other and to honor their mother and father? ha! Sorry to tell you but MORALS originate from God and the Bible. The Constitution of the United States was also based on morals from the Bible and so are most of the laws, the just laws anyway, of the land. So like it or not, God is involved. You have the freedom to worship who you want, or nothing at all. But it should be allowed in schools for those who are Christians to worship God as they will in public even. Muslims pray on a rug every day and no one would dream of telling one not to, just to put it in context, there is some serious discrimination going on here against Christians and it does cause problems with morals and how people behave. If that administration could exercise a little mercy, a characteristic of Christ, this problem wouldn’t have happened.

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          • Creationism isn’t a fact, it’s a theory, along with evolution. If the Constitution was based on morals from a well written book that became popular, that’s fine. I never said it should not be allowed in schools, but if you allow one you must allow ALL (not just for Christians, but Jews, Muslims, Buddhists, Pagan religions, Satanists). Do you see how the list goes on and on? Who decides what is a religion that is allowed to be practiced in school and what is not? With the limited amount of time children have in school, shouldn’t it be devoted to learning how to effectively read and write (and yes, garden), and leave the practicing of religion for your home and personal life?

          • A good Christian, or follower of any religion, doesn’t separate learning from their religion. Saying a prayer isn’t going to detract from any learning. Anyone should be able to say a prayer to who they want. I honestly woudn’t care if there was a 15 minute devotional time at school everyday and a prayer circle for Christians and another one for Wiccans. At least that is freedom being exercised and not a tight grip on everyone in the whole school system that makes expression a crime. The other symptom of that death grip on everyone is no common sense in a case like with this teacher. There is no room for anything but following the strict agenda that someone else set for us. You are trying to say that people believe there should only be a focus on Christians and only Christian activities allowed, that is not true. You are skewing the points to look extreme and try to discredit them that way.

          • You may not care if a group of Wiccans down the hall (ok maybe 1 or 2) have their own special group (complete with their own supersivor/teacher) for even a 15 minute devotional time, but I’m guessing that a lot of people would. Schools have enough trouble being funded for even the basics, and the funding implications of supporting all religions within the school system is enormous. I agree that learning and practicing a religion should go hand in hand, but there are other places to learn about it, places that don’t rely on meagre public funding.

          • Meg, evolution isn’t a ‘theory.’ It’s a ‘scientific theory.’ Those terms are completely different. You know what else is a scientific theory? Gravity. If evolution really was a theory in the scientific world, it would be called a hypothesis. It is a fact, from the flu virus adapting and changing its DNA structure every year, to the New Zealand Kiwi losing its wings after the separation of Australasia, to the arrival of the East-African Australopithecus, evolution is evident all around you.

            Rebecca – I don’t want my kids singing mindless hymns in school. School is not the place for fairy tales, it is the place for learning. If you want to believe in Thor or whatever deity tickles your fancy, you are, of course, free to do so, on your own time. I will not sit back and allow my tax dollars to be wasted on inane morality tales filled with talking snakes and burning bushes. Do not shove your religion down our throats. You are no different from anyone else, nor do you possess any kind of special privilege. Just because you believe in something, doesn’t mean others do.

            Would your attitude about religious singing not affecting school still apply is said institutions decided to sing Muslim prayers? I thought so.

          • Nullify, yes I agree, it is based on science, not like creationism, which is based on a book that someone wrote a long time ago. I don’t need convincing about evolution.

          • Nullify – Who said anything about anyone forcing your kids to sing “mindless hymns” in school? That’s what it sounded like your complaint was. Personally I think that kids in schools should be given 15 minutes to pray to their god of choice or meditate of they have no religion they adhere to. And it would give a child an opportunity to experience other religions. Sorry to see you as closed-minded about Christianity as you seem to believe that Christians are closed-minded to people who they perceive as sinners. And yes this includes kids of Muslim faith practicing their religion for that 15 minutes. If nothing else that 15 minute break would go a long way towards easing the stress these kids deal with at such an early age.

        • P.S. maybe we need another flood. If you understand the story of Noah’s ark you won’t be offended by this comment, you would just get on the ark.

          Reply
          • God promised to never flood the Earth and destroy everyone and everything again. But, there is coming a day when He will say enough is enough and all evil will be cast out. Read Revelation in the Bible. Also for those that feel they can’t understand the Bible, try reading the Book by Jonathan Cahn, The Harbinger: the Ancient Mystery that holds the Secret of America’s Future. This is a fictional book wrapped around Bible prophesy and recent true American Historic happenings. In my opinion a road map to where we might be headed if we don’t change our ways quickly. It is a pretty quick, easy to understand, and the facts easily verifiable.

        • You are all stark staring raving mad! Showing 8 year olds gardening tools has nothing to do with God , Christ or Satan!!!!! At 8 my kids were growing things in the garden and helping me with woodwork and fixing the car. If an 8 year old reads the word “spanner” what are you going to say, “wait until you are older”? I would ask him to pass me the 13mm socket, and he would get it right!.
          I had a very blunt hatchet, and my boys at 6 and 7 would happily whack away at a fallen log. They did not achieve anything except that they were copying Dad.
          The USA is a mental asylum with the nutters raving around pretending to run things.

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          • Agreed! This article is dealing with the idiocy of the zero tolerance rules that were put into place by those who lack common sense for those who lack common sense. THAT is really what is missing from schools and governing bodies – common sense.

    • Well Stan, Common sense isn’t so common anymore. I’ve been saying that for years. While they’re at it why don’t they just suspend all pens and pencils. A sharp pencil plunged into someones eye or ear is going to do a hell of a lot of damage. So by the schools logic pens and pencils are dangerous weapons. These idiots don’t realize that almost anything can be used as a weapon. Hitting someone with a garbage can, a chair, a light bulb, winging a piece of chalk at someone, hitting then with a book….it’s all about how you use it and the intent.

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    • These kinds of stories are why I am very apprehensive about sending my kids to school. They are still little, but I might just want to teach them at home to protect them from idiots (the administration, not the teacher).

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      • This isn’t about making them “safer”. It’s about total control of your kids and assuring they are dumbed down to the lowest possible level. When I was in school there was “shop” class. Kids learned how to use tools so they could be plumbers, carpenters etc. All gone now. Schools want your kids functionally illiterate with zero skills. Easier to control a dummy. Govts love compliance.

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  1. Drones, and now this? Sarah, I hope you’re just having an off week. I like this blog but I definitely don’t like the turn it’s taken lately. I would hate to unsubscribe, but I’m here for the food…

    Reply
    • This article IS also about food. Did you miss the part near the end about the child suspended from school for 5 days for bringing kombucha in his lunchbox–”for ‘violating’ the school’s drug and alcohol policy”??

      Reply
    • You must not be a long time reader here, Sarah. This blog frequently has articles like this interspersed with the food posts. I enjoy it all.

      Reply
    • You poor thing! Isn’t it awful when you try to go about life all peaceful and everything and then someone just comes along and ruins it by bringing up a small bit of the horrible problems riddling the land! How dare they?! Why, the very nerve of such people! I don’t want to hear about unmanned drones killing innocent children! Why would I even want to know it happens?! My world is perfect and I only desire to know about the culinary world! Well, minus the inclusion of any mention of GMOs or factory farming, of course!! lol get real lady, this stuff is really happening!! How do you think it’ll ever stop unless people open their eyes and spread the word?!

      Reply
      • “Why should we hear about body bags and deaths … I mean, it’s not relevant, so why should I waste my beautiful mind on something like that …” (Former First Lady, Barbara Bush, Good Morning America, 18th March 2003)

        Reply
    • Hi Sarah – let her unsubscribe, you have a right to running your blog as you wish – it is after all still a free speech country as far as I can tell.

      Reply
      • I think Sarah appreciates feedback from her readers – you can’t have a great blog (like she does) without listening to your readers. I have read this blog near daily for years and usually enjoy the occasional posts about the politics of real food. Concerns about drone technology and this article today are at best tangentially related to real food and living a WAPF lifestyle, however. Just expressing my thoughts on the subject material.

        Reply
        • it sort of sounds like you are threatening Sarah with unsubscribing. Also, if we can’t teach children about gardening, how will we have any food? Who will feed us when we are old and gray?

          Reply
    • I found the article on Drones very informative and right on topic of an out of control nanny state government, first they came for the marijuana and then they came for the raw milk, and now we have Drones snooping into everything and Teachers suspended for showing gardening tools that the Nanny State says are weapons?

      Sarah, “I don’t want to hear it” is the same intellectual laziness all the Germans who didn’t want to hear about the democide https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Democide their government was engaged in.

      Thanks Sarah Pope for sharing with your community very important information.

      Reply
      • Yup, it’s the old “I just want to stick my head in the sand” or please don’t give me any reality, I just can’t take it! Or, hey, don’t muddle up my information with the facts.
        Oh, I’m sorry, I am not being nice but I just couldn’t resist. I’m sure she is a very nice, sweet person.

        Reply
  2. Next thing you know high school chemistry teachers will be suspended for teaching how to use chemicals, and biology teachers for using instruments for dissecting frogs or flowers.

    I think they fear that the populace is catching on that we have been herded, and we are saying NO.

    Reply
  3. Sheena Barnes-Allan via Facebook April 25, 2013 at 11:31 am

    Wow….Completely ridiculous. What CAN you do in school these days without getting suspended? I seriously worry about the public education system.

    Reply
    • Tracy, perhaps you’d consider using the word ridiculous instead? You’d get across the same meaning and not hurt people’s feelings with a word that some consider to be a derogatory slur. Please.

      Reply
    • How is it considered “retarded”? I think you could use a better word to express your opinion. Use of the word “retarded” in this way is offensive to many people….not just those with children who have intellectual disabilities or developmental delay or those individuals who have intellectual disabilities or developmental delay.

      Reply
      • OMG… Why does everything have to be so “politically correct” all the time.. You know what she meant for goodness sake…. GET OVER IT….

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        • RETARDED… RETARTED… RETARDED… RETARDED… RETARDED!

          If the shoe fits… well, you know. You’re right, tracy. Out with PC!

          Reply
        • It’s not an acceptable word. Accept it and move on. Stop being the person in 1962 saying the n word has historicaluse so people should get over it. The r word is just as offensive toany.

          Reply
          • sorry that doesn’t fly. the “n” word has only one meaning and it is disgusting and disrespectful of another human being. Retarded has more than one meaning and is acceptable dependent on usage, i.e. less advanced; slow in growth, such as something in the food supply has retarded the growth of the animal, or the Roundup I use retards the growth of the weeds. When expressing that a normal person is acting retarded or saying something retarded it means what they are saying is not on par with their age or hopefully their IQ and to most people it sounds foolish or unreasonable. Or something retarded could be as I believe this person meant it, that what action was taken by the school against this teacher was so foolish and unreasonable that it could be taken as a retarded action. In the context of being used, It should not necessarily conjure up a picture of being mean or cruel to a physically or mentally severely challenged person..

        • To KATIE and DEBORAH: Political Correctness is another term for RESTRICTED SPEECH. If you can’t handle a word or two, GROW A PAIR! If you don’t want that, go live in North Korea, or England where you can get PUT IN JAIL just for saying the word HOMOSEXUAL(which is not even a slur by the way)! You’ll notice that it wasn’t until the early to mid 90′s that people started getting their panties in a bunch about what words people use and how they use them. How EVER did people talk and get their points across before then? It’s called, COMMON SENSE. DISCERNMENT. You are smart enough, at least I hope you are, that you KNOW what people mean when they say stuff like, “oh, that’s retarded!”, or “oh, that’s so gay!”. Maybe we should stop using adjectives ALTOGETHER just to appease the .2% like YOU who get butthurt over the most RETARDED STUFF! I’m a Vet(DON’T THANK ME) and I don’t really think that I’ve served my country only to come back to have someone wave their finger in my face and tell me, “you can’t talk like that, you might offend someone!” No one, I repeat: NO ONE WILL BAR ME FROM UTILIZING MY FREEDOM OF SPEECH! To Sarah: unless you have a kid who is ‘challenged’ shall we say, GET OFF IT and quit drinking your kool-aid. It’s because of people like YOU that our GOD GIVEN rights in general have been chipped away year after year, all in the name of PROGRESS, HOPE, MOVE FORWARD…. all slogans for communist and marxist dictators who disarmed the populace right before putting them through unspeakable horrors. I’m not too keen on promoting that stuff in the USA much less anywhere else, so please, just stop lady!

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        • Wow, just wow. I want to make a few points. First of all the teacher did nothing wrong. Kids are curious right? If we don’t yech them things like (don’t run with scissors) they’ll do it. If we spend a little bit of time and introduce news things AND teach them how to safely use new things they won’t be so curious. I might be going a lil off subject but my point is this, now they know what these things are and when they find them in the garage there’s less chance of injury if the child understands mishandling of the items could lead to injury, they now know what they are and are much less curious. I’m sure this was not the lesson the teacher was going for but the point is it helped them more than hurt them. As a rule the more things you keep your kids from the more they want them, the more curious they become. Stop sheltering and start teaching. As far as the retard comment!!!!! C’mon really? You know what the author of that comment was trying to say and it was not derogatory get over it. I live in the country and didn’t know “midget” was offensive till last year now it’s little people I mean isn’t it the same thing? The word midget means a lil person. People don’t like being called black , but can call me white ? You want me to address you as African American even though you , your parents, grand parents never been to Africa and giving a history test on Africa you’d fail it. Just am example of how all we look for is blame and something to bitch about. Sad part our kids are learning this too

          Reply
      • If you are offended, maybe you should spend some time in a sand blaster, grow some god damn skin. It’s PEOPLE LIKE YOU that insisted on ZERO TOLERANCE policies that very well may cost this man his career. FU.

        Reply
    • I completely agree with Tracy Beteta. Well said. Brief and concise. Katie and Deborah you epitomise exactly what she is speaking of.

      Reply
    • I agree with Guest. I worked at ARC for many years and have nieces and cousin who are mental and physically disabled. The word retarded does not refer to them anymore. we dont even say handicapped any more. so this is just slag like WTF.

      Reply
  4. Amanda Cook Elliott via Facebook April 25, 2013 at 11:32 am

    Gardening isn’t part of the “common core” as it would help students learn how to fend for themselves instead of relying on the government!

    Reply
  5. Elizabeth Kaufman via Facebook April 25, 2013 at 11:33 am

    As a guardian for a mentally retarded man, I wish people would not use this term in this manner. Just saying.

    Reply
    • Elizabeth, I have always been sensitive to mentally or physically challenged people, so, I do know where you are coming from. That said, I think the use of the word “retarded” can just mean backwards about a subject, not a person. I really believe that Tracy didn’t mean any disrespect. This is not about people being stupid; it is about the failure to think and comprehend a situation that requires some degree of common sense/wisdom. Sadly, our society is lacking terribly in this area. I have known some “special needs” people who had way more sense than the people in this story, excluding the teacher who was unjustly accused.

      Reply
    • I’m the mother of a severely disabled daughter, who had a catastrophic genetic syndrome and died at age seven. I’m not offended. Just saying.

      Reply
      • I also have a severely retarded brother, he is special, sweet and I love him dearly, I am not offended either. We are so offended at everything, which goes right along with this teacher story, we’re so afraid to do or say anything to offend anyone/everyone, that we can’t even think logically any more.

        Reply
  6. Thea Steggall via Facebook April 25, 2013 at 11:36 am

    This is just crazy. Unbelievable. If you think about it, anything can be a weapon. That school is going overboard. The tools were meant for gardening.

    Reply
  7. Mary Murphy Grisham via Facebook April 25, 2013 at 11:42 am

    Oh gosh how in sane is that come on they need to consitrate more on the gun, the drugs the evil the hate and GOD BACK IN OUR SCHOOLS

    Reply
    • It is quite evident that we do not need God in our schools, but education. For example spelling and punctuation.
      Oh gosh! How insane is that. Come on, they need to concentrate more on the gun, the drugs, the evil, the hate and God, back in our schools.
      I am sorry, but there is no way that I can make sense out of the last sentence.
      It appears that you want the teachers to concentrate on a specific gun, drugs, a specific evil, a specific “hate” and a specific God.
      The word “back’ is superfluous, or incorrect in this context.
      Why not concentrate on Reading, Writing and Arithmetic?

      Reply
  8. Debbie Doty Cali via Facebook April 25, 2013 at 11:42 am

    Numerous young Calis are yelling things at the screen right now. This case would be hilarious if it wasn’t evidence of such a ridiculous and outrageous loss of sense.

    Reply
  9. Nicole Naatz via Facebook April 25, 2013 at 11:43 am

    I am assuming shop class has been outlawed by now also? I remember using saws, screwdrivers and power tools in class

    Reply
    • My son started school as early as August 3rd before. You must not garden much if you have never needed a screwdriver, wrench or pliers. All useful in watering systems. Ridiculous that he would be suspended for that while in New York a middle school gets district support for a tolerance class that made the children kiss someone of the same sex without parental consent. Crazy.

      Reply
    • my question exactly- did the teacher say they were gardening tools or is the author of the blog saying they are gardening tools? because maybe I am not in the know, but I don’t think pliers, screwdrivers, wrenches are used in the garden …

      Reply
      • He probably showed them how you could stab someone to death with a miniature garden trowel, if you crept up on them really quietly. The Pliers can be used to extract finger nails and terrorist information (he was not allowed to bring water and bags into the classroom). “Spanners”, well spanners can be used on “nuts” and that is not PC allowed.

        Reply
  10. This is why I will only put my kids an AMI Montessori school where these basic items are a part of everyday life in class.

    Reply
  11. Ellen Tietjen via Facebook April 25, 2013 at 11:49 am

    Wait a minute…how are wrenches, pliers and screwdrivers “gardening tools”. Not that I think they are weapons, but if that is how he gardens…

    Reply
    • Agreed. There’s got to be more to the story. “Teacher Suspended for Showing Gardening Tools to Class” is a misleading headline, but I imagine was purposefully phrased that way.

      Reply
    • sometimes you have to use tools on your gardening tools. the head of my rake is attached with a screw, necessitating a screwdriver. my window box planters have arms that need to be loosened and tightened with a wrench. it’s not that hard to imagine why he was using a few simple tools in relation to gardening.

      Reply
  12. Sandy Brillowski-Prahl via Facebook April 25, 2013 at 11:50 am

    This is crazy. By the way, these tools can be used by farmers and trade jobs. We have a shortage of workers in the US for trade jobs because they push college on EVERYONE. 4 year college is not for everyone. Why should we discourage schools from teaching all types of tools, farming, gardening and trade jobs.

    Reply
  13. For goodness sake! An ipad can be dangerous weapon if wielded. These are every day tools. No wonder children don’t know what real food looks like!

    Even a book can be a dangerous weapon and in more ways than if applied forcefully to a face, with the majority containing misinformation and brainwashing tactics!

    Reply
  14. What about ‘shop’ class – the boys would learn how to make things in wood, etc. while the girls would take home ec…….doesn’t this exist anymore? Lots of *dangerous* items in both those classes!

    Reply
  15. Those are gardening tools to fix the gas powered garden tools! But still, had he brought in a scythe or machete or even an axe, all of which are great gardening tools, I might see the school’s point, otherwise I just shake my head.

    Reply
    • “had he brought in a scythe or machete or even an axe, all of which are great gardening tools, I might see the school’s point,”
      Not unless he used them on the pupils!

      Reply
  16. Melissa Northrop Smart via Facebook April 25, 2013 at 12:00 pm

    It’s very simple. If they fire him, they can replace him with a brand new teacher who is lower on the pay scale. It happens all the time.

    Reply
  17. So, they are saying that no person in that school has a pair of scissors in their desk? How about a fingernail file? THIS IS NUTS! Hope the man sues the pants off em! This madness must stop!

    Reply
  18. Dawn Lane via Facebook April 25, 2013 at 12:13 pm

    No cars to get to work, either – those kill thousands every year. Anything can be a weapon if you choose. Janitor? No more mops or brooms, no sprays of chemicals, etc. This is ridiculous.

    Reply
  19. Sarah- I’m glad you take the time to inform us about so many things, so thank you for that. I can’t even begin to describe the eye opening I’ve had since I became a real foody. Actually, once I started learning about the many ways we are being poisoned with our food, water and air, it only seemed natural to start digging a little deeper into what else is going on around us.

    I was going to comment yesterday on your drone article because it annoyed me the way some people were getting in your face about your “conspiracy theories.” Please people, don’t be so quick to judge based on one article. Dig deeper. Start with the NDAA. Had it not been for Kelly the Kitchen Kop writing about it on her site, I would have never even known about it. Google it. There are very few MSM stories about it, why is that? Was the public not supposed to be told? Reading about that took me on a months long investigation into many things I was totally clueless about previously: MK Ultra, chem-trails, Bilderberg and the Georgia Guidestones. You want to read something really scary? Read presidential Executive Orders signed over the years. In one fell swoop your government can shut down your water, electricity, phone, come onto your property and take your food and shut down the roads so you have no where to run.

    I appreciate that my real food bloggers share things other than recipes, because even though I’ve acquired some great recipes and tips, those things pale in comparison to the knowledge I have now. Keep up the good work, Sarah!

    Reply
    • I too appreciate you Sarah. Honestly, I don’t agree with everything you write about, but I’m not going to give you a hard time unless you lie, don’t give facts, etc. No one has to agree all the time with everyone, that’s called being a sheep, which is what is partially going on in this country. You’re right Susan, we need to dig deeper, think for ourselves, learn truth not just say, “oh we’ll never know…….” or, “oh how can we know?” that kind of thinking is how we lose our way as a country, as a people. This is how we get bad, inept officials voted in to our government. Don’t vote on fluff, i.e. oh he/she’s so cute, or well, he sounds smart, he sounds good, or I like what he’s saying but not understanding the ramification of what is being put forth, or well, everyone else likes him/her so I guess I’ll vote for him/her too. Character IS important! Who you hang with IS important (ever heard the expression – birds of a feather flock together?) being caught lying or exaggerating a lot IS important! Think people, just think!

      Reply
    • Susan, I went down that road a while ago and it is shocking when you learn how the world really works, isn’t it? But you mentioned those executive orders, including taking food. My church has cannery facilities where people can go to can their food (big number ten cans) for food storage and pay for it. The federal government now requires everyone who does this to fill out a form with their identifying information and what type of food they canned and how much of it. I can only think this goes straight to FEMA so they will have a list of whose door to knock down when the next “crisis” happens to steal their food and resources.

      Reply
      • “The most dangerous man to any government is the man who is able to think things out for himself, without regard to the prevailing superstitions and taboos. Almost inevitably he comes to the conclusion that the government he lives under is dishonest, insane and intolerable, and so, if he is romantic, he tries to change it. And even if he is not romantic personally he is apt to spread discontent among those who are”. ~ H.L. Mencken

        Reply
    • If my child was suspended for something like that I would just never bring him back! What a bunch of small minded people at some schools!

      Reply
    • Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist

      I considered the cited source from the Rutherford Institute to be the most credible since an attorney from this nonprofit is actually handling the case. It was screwdrivers, wrenches, and pliers that were mentioned in this source not boxcutters or pocket knives. The boxcutter and pocket knife assertion could in fact be trumped up and not be true so I stuck with the most reliable source.
      Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist\’s last post: Teacher Suspended for Showing Gardening Tools to Class

      Reply
      • completely agree sarah…the Rutherford Institute is excellent, and it, along w/the main man John Whitehead can be trusted. it’s an org that deserves support and kuddos for taking up for the underdogs being beat down by this rogue govt.

        Reply
  20. They want everybody to eat healthy, but not know how to use garden tools? I am sure that Michelle Obama used garden tools when showing kids how to plant a garden, and that was O.K. What is next?

    Reply
  21. Lyndsey Stark Stang via Facebook April 25, 2013 at 12:39 pm

    Lets also suspend home ec teachers because a spatula was used by a lady to kill her daughter, knivesm spoons and forks have been used too, pencils and pens as well. We might as well homeschool. It’s getting dumb.

    Reply
  22. Lyndsey Stark Stang via Facebook April 25, 2013 at 12:39 pm

    Can someone suspend the person who thought this teacher is bad because that person is clearly not stable.

    Reply
  23. Michelle Vivino via Facebook April 25, 2013 at 1:34 pm

    This is my go-to comment now, because I have run out of words: !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Reply
  24. Gee…I guess this educator should have just known that these seemingly common, everyday tools were actually weapons. The way he just brandished these lethal pieces of garden weapons in front of those poor kids is APPALLING! I guess he should have known better and just showed the kids pictures of them instead, but that would probably still be way too much negligence on his part. He could have taught them how to use plastic spoons to dig dirt, but not forks or knives, because again, just way too DANGEROUS!! This is why more and more people are turning to private school and home schooling, the public school system is so wack sometimes! Ridiculous. Poor guy. I hope he can get a better job somewhere else, but I’d bet more than anything he would like to have his job back, only that would be kind of awkward I suppose.

    Reply
    • I don’t think so. The boy scouts always have pocket knives. Pocket knives come in very handy in many situations. Why are we so paranoid? Do we really think so little of our children now that if we show them how to use a pocket knife they will become a mass murderer. If parents are doing their job, the kids should turn out just find.

      Reply
  25. Heather McCullagh Siegerdt via Facebook April 25, 2013 at 1:55 pm

    My husband, currently a soldier, formerly a teacher said “Good for him! He will probably fail… I hope he doesn’t, but he probably will.”

    Reply
  26. Manang Kusinera via Facebook April 25, 2013 at 1:59 pm

    A school that does not have common sense…pathetic…and this is where children are supposed to learn? One man’s action that is definitely going in the right direction apprehended by the school admin? What a shame! Is there a petition or a way to let the school learn about how disgusted the public is with their action?

    Reply
  27. Stacy Grisswell via Facebook April 25, 2013 at 2:07 pm

    What next, will parents need licenses to have gardening tools at home as well? And god forbid that someone have carpentry tools! How absolutely ludicrous!!

    Reply
  28. Colleen M Griffen via Facebook April 25, 2013 at 2:14 pm

    so sick and construed – and taken out of context – what the heck????? He should sue the school district for absurd vigilantism

    Reply
  29. Kris Payne Boyle via Facebook April 25, 2013 at 2:50 pm

    unbelieveable and uncalled for. I am tired of the knee-jerk reactions of people in authority. They react – no thinking – and no backtracking when all evidence shows they are wrong!

    Reply
  30. Sandra Dunbar via Facebook April 25, 2013 at 2:57 pm

    Stupid! I thought people from Chicago were smart. This superintendent must be from another state.

    Reply
  31. The most credible source I could find for this story was from the Rutherford Institute .. Mr. Bartlett’s attorney is from this nonprofit. The story on their website makes no mention of knives being shown so I am questioning the validity of this information because if it were true, you would think the Rutherford Institute would have mentioned it given they are handling the actual case. https://www.rutherford.org/publications_resources/tri_in_the_news/teacher_who_showed_garden_tools_to_second_grade_students_is_suspended_witho

    Reply
  32. Given that this teacher had a stellar track record and was trying to teach the children something that was actually useful for their lives, it is ridiculous to me that he was suspended. So many in positions of government bureaucratic authority have zero common sense.

    Reply
  33. Linda Gitanascalza via Facebook April 25, 2013 at 3:22 pm

    just another subtle indication that we are not a free society anymore…slowly but surely get to where they want us to be.

    Reply
  34. Linda Gitanascalza via Facebook April 25, 2013 at 3:27 pm

    Ellen maybe he was teaching a workshop to the kids.there are many programs they like to teach and implement but our gov is focused on “core curriculum” so research the origin of it……

    Reply
  35. Linda Gitanascalza via Facebook April 25, 2013 at 3:30 pm

    there is a group called making friends through liberty ~~~please feel free to join~~~i will put in your names if they ask who you are…for anyone…just message me and I will tell the person in charge of group.there is so much to learn about….

    Reply
  36. Elizabeth Proctor via Facebook April 25, 2013 at 3:31 pm

    thehealthyhomeeconomist If carrying a pocket knife is an offense in the school’s zero tolerance rules I can’t imagine the client’s lawyer would admit publicly to his client’s guilt of such. What kind of lawyer would do that?!!

    Reply
  37. Linda Gitanascalza via Facebook April 25, 2013 at 3:32 pm

    I am so glad to see how we become more and more aware of these things in society….please join making friends through liberty…I think you all can be a great voice to stop the nonsense!

    Reply
  38. Doug MacLeod via Facebook April 25, 2013 at 3:53 pm

    This whole situation is asinine; ‘show a kid a tool, go to jail’. How are they supposed to learn about these tools? This coming from a city with so many homicides.

    Reply
  39. Dawn Lane via Facebook April 25, 2013 at 4:09 pm

    Obviously, they should only learn about them from pictures, and not the real thing. Someone thinks the presentation of some object that could be construed as a weapon is an obvious opportunity for someone to then use that object as a weapon (zero common sense). This is why so many are leaving the teaching profession now – teach to a test, learn only what’s on the test, don’t think outside the box, etc. Very sad state for our education system.

    Reply
  40. Dawn Lane via Facebook April 25, 2013 at 4:11 pm

    Here in Georgia, school starts back the last week of July or first week of August for their “balanced” school year. Yes, it’s bizarre.

    Reply
  41. The education system makes me absolutely sick now a days they are so brainwashed with terrorism and see something say something, these educational systems have become terrorists in our own schools watching our children teaching them government and globalist propaganda. These people are so far from reality and whats really going on in this world the creep me the hell out and resemble mindless zombies and more of a threat to my child than a benefit. this school system should be ashamed of itself and I hope that teacher wins his lawsuit, their is very few teachers that want to veer out of the government propaganda and actually teach our children survival skills such as this excellent example of a teacher. I suggest that you home school your children as soon as possible and get them away from these corrupt school systems. god bless that teacher and I hope that he finds another school to teach in that isn’t communist police state style.

    Reply
  42. Pingback: Teacher Suspended for Showing Gardening Tools to Class | The Daily Rapid

    • I know you have never seen a garden in your life, expect the Walmart’s vegetables section.. but believe it or not, those tools are used to install and maintain stuff like water-drip system, growing rails, growing racks, growing lights etc.

      Reply
    • CorruptionTracker April 25, 2013 at 8:18 pm

      I see 2 images up there, one is of wrenches (okay not gardening tools per se)

      But the rest seem fine to me?

      Gardening shears and shovels etc, unless they changed the first image…

      LOL! Was there a point?

      Reply
  43. Welcome to ‘dope and change can believe in’. What a joke the city of Chicago become, what a bunch of authoritarian left wing trash.

    Reply
  44. And you guys call this the land of the free?? I’m gobsmacked. Here in New Zealand, we not only show the kids the gardening tool – we teach them how to garden! What is wrong with some of your people – how did they ever get into positions where they can make such absurd decisions as to suspend this teacher? I could not live in a country like yours, it is far too restrictive.

    Reply
  45. School should remove all those dangerous doors, windows and electrical outlets, before someone gets hurt. Also they should pad walls and floors just in case someone falls down. And while you are there you must watch 2hr of “safety at school” video every day.. just in case.. you know, to be safe.

    Reply
  46. Bryan SmithAvionics April 25, 2013 at 6:59 pm

    Famous quote show how schools not teaching world famous common practice even the U.S. Department of Transportation is even admitting to, and it shows again how schools are limiting us, controlling our death rates;
    Famous fact;“More of us died in cars than all the wars in history combined”. + Many schools for many years taught “H2O(Water)Electrolysis” = making unlimited free combustible fuels.
    Many fleets of vehicles in the U.S & many countries use 100% natural gas many years.
    Schools are suppose educate simple important things. We use to teach out side on farms, in work shops, no more work shop class either?
    Recently, finally after billions of YouTube viewers, reacting from so much simple free fuel videos of H2O+12volts=Hydrogen, from endless lists of world wide examples for years. This is common practice for many years by millions and not needing less reliable deliveries.
    Finally the U.S. Department of Transportation has admitted “Hydrogen and Home made Hydrogen” or “Hydrogen made on board” as many vehicles do, is the best fuel being it is more efficient, safer being less dangerous rising up away from you faster, leaves no much less residue on anything it touches, This is on the graph page alongside of other fuels not listed in most related pages of the D.O.T. as listed in one the related “Water Electrolysis” or “H2O = gas” pages for gas research places many years already.
    As may YouTube videos show these simple examples how to wire a auto battery and makes bubbles in water using just a car battery or in house for heat or generator.
    (this comment was deleted twice already, if there is a limit of words or no extension of comments please say so to let others know because that is the whole point of this ‘health & economy’ related page listing a school with faulty practice’ related article).

    Reply
  47. This is how starts in Authoritative Dictatorships! A little slice here and there gone from your personal freedoms in the name of safety. Everyone is made to feel guilty. Do not question the officials, or your name will be given to the Homeland Enforcers to put you in a Gulag or to a reeducation camp! Read the book Gulag, or The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich. We are now them!

    Reply
  48. The “hazardous” tools in question were pliers, screwdrivers and wrenches, these are not gardening tools, but still crazy he got in trouble. Illinois sucks

    Reply
  49. time to outlaw horticulture and how to live on your own too then, and it’s also time for us to learn how to live without having to put forth any effort on our own unless it’s getting someone else to provide for us. Did i get even close?

    Reply
  50. An academic education is of no value without common sense. My initial impulse is to call for a PLB (parking lot beating), but the people who did this already suffer from head up the butt syndrome. However, then I would be acting like these idiots and I don’t want to do that.
    Now you can see why the government wants to outlaw home schooling, because these students don’t follow the herd like the kids and the teachers have to do to stay in school or teach in the public schools.
    Maybe this will lead to an increase in parent participation at the school, if they still have parents night, where the parents can go to the school and see what’s going on and speak out about idiotic school rules. Just when you think it’s safe to go back in the water……

    Reply
  51. Okay, so there’s a peculiar definition of “gardening tools” going on here, just for starters. You see, I did a little digging (geddit?) and it turns out that the tools he brought to school included wrenches, pliers, and a pocket knife (which is what caused the suspension).

    ‘Second grade teacher Doug Bartlett was recently suspended from his job after he showed off garden tools to his class … [he] displayed wrenches, pliers, screwdrivers and a pocket knife, but kept the devices out of students’ hands, reports UPI.’

    So, I checked out the UPI report …

    ‘”Plaintiff, a school teacher, showed to his students a pocket knife, as part of a curriculum-mandated ‘tool discussion,’” the lawsuit states. “Other garden-variety tools plaintiff used in the discussion were a box cutter, various wrenches, screwdrivers, and pliers. As a result of showing a pocket knife, plaintiff was charged with bringing a weapon to school, and received a four-day suspension without pay. Plaintiff sues for money damages and to have this suspension expunged from his record.”‘

    I don’t actually have a lot of sympathy at this point. The teacher must have known that there was a school policy on the subject of knives and still brought one to school. What he showed his students was that it was perfectly okay to bring knives to school as part of what is essentially “show and tell”. He received the same sort of suspension a student would get and, frankly, needs to suck it up – just like a student would have to.

    Sappho
    http://ca.shine.yahoo.com/blogs/shine-on/chicago-teacher-sues-school-being-suspended-showing-garden-205200372.html
    http://www.upi.com/Odd_News/2013/04/18/Chicago-teacher-sues-over-pocket-knife-suspension/UPI-30621366302601/

    Reply
    • Oh man, you are as ..(word removed to remain politically correct) .. as the administrators.
      A pocket knife is a tool not a weapon, a sword is a weapon, a knife is a tool. Anything and everything can essentially be used as a weapon, a hammer or wrench is far more lethal than a clasp knife. Many, many people have been killed and bludgeoned by baseball bats, but that does not classify them as weapons. Even more have been killed and maimed by cars, but that does not mean that cars are weapons.
      Are you related to Piers Morgan perchance?

      Reply
  52. YEA.. just imagine if we all had gardening skills – we would PLANT FREE WIKI-TREES, WIKI-VEGES…= we would turn our cities into FREE GARDENS = free food to all 7 billion people = SOVEREIGNTY = destruction of their system that is based on profit! They could not sell their GMO/ pasticides, poisoned food!
    Of course – it’s about WEAPONS against their profit based system!

    Now – we all have to save our tomatos/apple seeds and plant all around – google: GUERRILLA PLANTING!!!
    USE & CREATE FREE STUFF at all levels = best weapon against their slave system that want us to pay for water, fruits, shelter… (real human birthrights that no constitution has ever defended)
    BE THE POWER
    HELP build a parallel economic system = GIFT ECONOMY where everything is A GIFT… because life is a gift

    If not… soon, they will ask money for the air that we breath in (in Australia they already ask CO2 tax = expiration air tax)

    Reply
    • Well, in Maryland they’re talking about a “rain tax”! LMAO Have fun trying to force anyone to pay THAT!

      PS – Very few people are going to work for free then give away the fruits of their labor for free. I think you are a little daft on utopia. This is a country of 300+ million people and over half won’t or don’t work at all so I don’t think your idea is doable.
      LisaT\’s last post: Teacher Suspended for Showing Gardening Tools to Class

      Reply
      • Wikipedia, LINUX, UBUNTU… collaborators do already work for FREE in A GIFT ECONOMY – you can use wikipedia for free thanks to these people – they are pioneers… and many people in Europe, Canada … have already started to turn OUR CITIES INTO FREE GARDENS
        No – it’s not about an utopia!
        Use FREE STUFF and SHARE & GIFT – no better way to finish with their system that creates scarcity by design

        Reply
  53. Yes indeed. The world is becoming increasingly draconian and crazy. It seems to me that common sense left the planet and is replaced by maniacs who have absolutely no common sense. Too much TV and violent movie watching, playing violent video games, but a teacher cannot show basid tools to his kids at school. .
    How do we stop this insanity??

    Reply
    • Start going to all the school board meetings and visit the schools on a regular basis to see what they’re up to. It’s usually up to no good as evidenced by the stupids they are cranking out by the 1000′s in the colleges and universities that teach your kids. These stupids are infecting your children on a daily basis. Put a stop to the infestation by putting all schools under a microscope and call them out every day. If you don’t your children are going to be brain dead and useless when thrust into society. I feel sorry for the teacher in this case because he was trying to show how useful tools are and he was the only one handling them. Someone in the admin needs to be fired an have a mandatory “mental health check”.
      LisaT\’s last post: Teacher Suspended for Showing Gardening Tools to Class

      Reply
    • You must not be a gardener. I’m an avid gardener and I use tools in my garden A LOT!
      I build my own grow boxes and raised planting beds, install fencing to keep animals from getting in and eating the fruits of my labor, use screwdrivers to make holes for planting seeds, used knives to divide my Iris rhizomes and other perennials, etc. What kind of lunatics do they have running the asylums we call public schools? I’m so glad I don’t have children because I’d be on the 6:00 news every night due to calling out the ignoramuses who claim they are running things! When is the stupidity going to stop?!!! When are you parents out there going to pay attention and say ENOUGH ALREADY! Geez
      LisaT\’s last post: Teacher Suspended for Showing Gardening Tools to Class

      Reply
  54. This is what happens in a super-litigious society, in which the law is routinely used as a recreational blood-sport to seek the opportunity to extort millions of dollars from others, for the most trivial of incidents via the institutions of the law, at the state and/or federal level. A state of affairs that Americans vote for, and demand to be put in place. Next time, vote more responsibly and use the law with greater prudence.

    Reply
  55. gee Im remembering in 3rd grade the teacher used the smoking machine to show us how bad it is to smoke. ..pipe with baffle and bag with paper that showed the junk that got in your lungs….Im sure they dont do that today. however I know it stopped a lot of kids from smoking when they got older!!!

    Reply
  56. well, I see 3 problems right off the top: first he showed the children “scary and pointy things”, second he was discussing a subject that might foster self reliance (gardening) and third, since home gardening can be done without GMO death foods, Monsanto no doubt is upset…..

    Reply
  57. If you do a little reading, they were NOT garden tools, they were “garden-variety” tools for a lesson on tools which is state-mandated. The school’s objection seemed focused on a pocket-knife. I am not saying the lesson was inappropriate or that the teacher was not careful in his presentation. I am saying that if you are going to hype up these bad school decisions, getting facts straight is helpful. The public schools make enough genuinely stupid decisions without the need to fabricate more. Personally we do not entrust the education of our children to them!

    Reply
  58. What was he teaching if he doesn’t know the difference between “gardening tools” and pliers, screwdrivers and wrenches?

    Reply
  59. As long as we keep falling for the government false flag terrorist attacks and refuse to grow backbones,the idiots that be will continue this bizarre behavior and mess up the lives of good people like this teacher!

    Reply
  60. Gardening tools are not “weapons.” Whoever suspended this teacher for showing kids common-sense tools for the real world should be fired and then sentenced to community service, say maybe in a COMMUNITY GARDEN, so they can themselves learn something of value. Most of our founders were Deists, not Christians. There’s a big difference. Deists worship the creator of the universe. Christians and others make up myths about that creator and say “our way is the only way.”
    tonybinca\’s last post: Weekend Reads: WPLongform Picks

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  62. Shame on this man for teaching children other than mindless words in a book. These children have no right to learn anything other than what the school system has in place for them. Let there be more cameras , less consideration, more security, less common sense, more violence , less care and most certainly there will not be any attempt to learn how to defend yourself let alone educate yourself.

    How did we let it come to this?

    Reply
    • I like the sarcasm. heaven forbid one of those students learns to use the tools and becomes a productive member of society.

      Reply
  63. What’s wrong with this picture. Tools are not dangerous they are tool used to fix things. It is the intention of the user of the tools. That is it is how they are used. There is nothing wrong with teaching your kids how to handle a pair of pliers correctly. Sounds like someone has too much time on their hands,

    Reply
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  66. It really shouldn’t have come as a surprise. Consider the fact that shop classes, even at technical high schools, don’t exist anymore. The administration over reacted, yes, but as a parent of a CPS child and one who has spent numerous hours in the building, and outside the building helping, I see it this way.

    There is a lack of teaching the basic fundamentals of respect and common sense to the children, ergo, the schools fear that even a gardening tool will be misused by students. Schools also seem to lack a good pool of principals these days. The heads of schools are not trained to think, or maybe they are and just can’t. It wouldn’t surprise me if this was the administration retaliating against that teacher for being outspoken and advocating for a better school.

    So what we have here is a huge district with kids who don’t follow rules/directions, lack of exposure to the tools, and a teacher who tried to do what was right.

    You can’t do what’s right in Bizarro World folks. The issues are deeper than that teacher and this should absolutely be expunged from his record and he should transfer to a place where his skills and knowledge be celebrated. I have no hope of ever seeing that in CPS.

    Reply
  67. Well, let’s see… No tools. (they’re WEAPONS) No pop-tarts… (they can be chewed into a GUN SHAPE) No recess…. (little darlings might fall down and skin a knee!) Lets ban another potentially hurtful thing… THE PENCIL! It can be used as a weapon.

    Zero tolerance is NOT going to accomplish what it was intended for. It never prevented ANYTHING but the education of children. You would be shocked (or maybe not) at what I took to school. As did lots of kids. Nobody was hurt. And we didn’t grow up into raving homicidal maniacs.

    Reply
  68. This is so stupid that I have trouble believing it actually happened! We get kids in high schools who don’t know how to measure or do anything useful because they’ve been so “protected” all their lives from household tools and other practical equipment and activities.

    How do people so dumb get into positions of authority?

    Reply
  69. Doesn’t anyone read the obituaries? COMMON SENSE died some time ago. It must have, because it has been gone for some time now.

    Reply
  70. Before everyone gets their panties twisted in a wad…understand that besides wrenches pliers and screwdrivers, the “gardening tools” also included a pocket knife and boxcutter. I’m quite sure that is what he was suspended over. Understandable, in this day and age, and a pretty poor decision on the teachers part to not clear this with supervisors in advance.

    Reply
    • As a farmer, I carry a pocket knife on my belt most days – use it in harvesting and can be used for cutting animals out of electrical fencing if they get tangled – could SAVE a life. As for a box cutter, I use those to trim my irrigation lines, make neat cuts on plastic for row cover, etc. Remember the day when we used to use SAWS, HAMMERS and POWER DRILLS? If we don’t teach kids how to SAFELY use these things – they’ll either be scared of them or dangerous with them. Get a grip. I’m sure he was being safe and it even says he kept them locked up when not in use – by him.

      Reply
      • Farmer Marie,
        ” Remember the day when we used to use SAWS, HAMMERS and POWER DRILLS? If we don’t teach kids how to SAFELY use these things — they’ll either be scared of them or dangerous with them.”

        You said a mouthful there. My Dad was a machinist by trade. At his place of work, he had an assortment of fine tools. In the home toolbox, he had an assortment of dull cutting tools, blunt striking tools, and ‘bargain basement’ power tools. It took more energy to make the tools work than to go and buy what you wanted to make. Result: I am not good at using tools. I know what I want to do, but never developed the skill. I can do lots of things, but they ‘most always look un-finished.

        Reply
  71. Oh, my goodness! I think they should suspend all horticulture teachers. It’s awful! They are subjecting our children to gardening tools every class day! They even have the kids bring tools to class. I’m horrified! Now they will have to be expelled from school. Where will it all end? Oh, by the way, for all the liberals that agree with me, look up the word sarcasm in the dictionary.

    Reply
  72. Obviously, these school officials haven’t been to Mount Olympus recently; if they had, they wpuld have know that cultivation of grapes requires a working knowledge of gardening tools. My cousin Dionysus should pay them a visit, I’ll look into it.

    Reply
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  77. They are weapons, weapons against Monsanto! Used effectively, these weapons will defend you from a disease/cancer filled life of eating manufactured food.

    Hard to believe these people are qualified to be running a school system.

    Reply
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  79. Due process is the fifth amendment. While skimming though the comments I didn’t notice anyone else catching this. If we are going to remain free people we must know our rights so that we can recognize when they are being taken from us. I would humbly suggest everyone read the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution at least yearly with your families. Perhaps on Independence Day- July 4th and Constitution Day- September 17th. :)

    Reply
  80. Open mouth, insert foot. Due process is in the 14th too, but I think that was more about extending the 5th amendment to those who had just been granted Personhood in the 14th and 15th amendment. Either way, reading the documents is still important. ;)

    Reply
  81. Another example of “cherry picked” information from a situation for the purpose of furthering an agenda of fear and hate mongering.
    Find the original article, read it, and all the details, then form an opinion.
    I’m a Master Gardener and my favorite handheld tool if a “trake” (trowel on one end, 3 prong rake on the other end) and small sharpshooter shovel. I never use pliers, wrenches or screwdrivers and find it odd that these are being used to demonstrate gardening to second graders, myself. And, showing a pocket knife to young students in these days of unrest was just plain dumb! I, frankly, don’t blame the school system. If your child came home telling you that his/her teacher showed them a pocket knife, wouldn’t you be concerned?! No matter what the subject being discussed. .

    Reply
    • No, I wouldn’t be concerned since I trust his teacher because I am involved at school and because my husband and 16 yr old carry pocket knives and my second grader who is in cub scouts has already earned his first pocketknife there. I am not a master gardener but have used those other tools in my quest to grow a garden. Are these times of unrest worse than the times of desegregation or the old west? As a matter of fact, my 16 yr old who is dual enrolled this year at a tech school for diesel mechanics is allowed to carry a pocketknife to school because it is a tool.

      Reply
  82. Gardening is wonderful. Gardening is used as a tool to help people see the beauty in life. WHY RUIN WHAT THE ORIGINAL POST WAS ALL ABOUT??? Teaching a person to fish is better than giving a person a fish, and talking about what you believe, and is irrelevant to the original topic, is a waste of time. I’m going outside to garden. How about it, folks???

    Reply
  83. My kids go to a waldorf school, where they garden everyday in the biodynamic garden. Starting in 5th grade they are taught how to harvest wheat and oats using a scythe and a sickle! How’s that for dangerous gardening tools! Go to a waldorf school, not an ultra regulated public school.

    What about scalpels in biology? Chemicals in chemistry? Knives in Home ec?

    Reply

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