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Is it the principle or the principal?

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Published on: Thursday, May 30, 2013

By Brian J. Karem

It’s getting to close to summer in Montgomery County. You can tell because it’s near freezing on one day and next to boiling the day after.

However there is more schizophrenia in the area than on the thermometer.

There’s the bumper pool, whack-a-mole concept of pedestrian traffic in the area which has to have everyone wondering.

It seems a day doesn’t go by wherein some poor schmuck walking across the street with the light in the county gets whacked by a school bus, construction vehicle, soccer mom on the cell phone driving a minivan or some businessman adjusting his tie while eating his lunch and driving his Lexus.

At the same time the county police are telling us the revenue from speed cameras in the county is down as people are driving more safely.

Maybe we should ask the injured or dead pedestrians piling up like firewood in the streets their thoughts on that. Perhaps, just perhaps, the roads are marginally safer. I cannot argue that. But I can tell you while crossing the street in beautiful downtown Burbank, I mean Rockville, the other day I nearly had my nose separated from my face as a woman driving a minivan ignored the light and crossed in front of me with absolutely no concern for my safety nor the safety of the other five people legally in the crosswalk.

Maybe we should develop a video game and only let people reapply for their driver’s license if and only if they can navigate a pedestrian frog across traffic and floating logs without getting them killed.

Wait. I think I’ve seen that game.

The game I haven’t seen before is the one called “hide the student” which appears to be popular at a local elementary school.

The county recently settled a lawsuit brought by teachers at Kemp Mill Elementary School who accused the principal of taking students into a closet and doing some very questionable things with those students.

The county tried to get the lawsuit tossed, and when their motion to do so failed, the county quickly settled the suit before it went to trial.

Meanwhile the principal is still on the job.

In a deposition the principal said he did indeed on occasion put a child in a closet, but it wasn’t because of any nefarious motives. These children were apparently out of control and needed a quick “timeout” so they could gather their wits.

According to the school system the allegations of nefarious contact were unfounded. The principal, indeed, said he was trying to eliminate danger to other students by putting kids in a closet.

According to a school spokesman there are times principals need to take actions to protect students, and sometimes that may mean isolating a student who is a danger to themselves or others.

So, in this scenario, you have an out-of-control student in the neighborhood of eight-years-old and the proper method of disciplining this out of control child is to put him or her in a closet?

And I thought the Lord of the Flies was just fiction.

What kind of schizophrenic nonsense is that? I don’t have to suppose the worst to think this nuts.

It doesn’t even approach any kind of logic. Being born into a family of lawyers and car salesmen we would merely toss this excuse off at the dinner table as being grade “F” baloney – not worthy to try on the kids or even people we didn’t like.

Meanwhile life goes on in schizophrenic Montgomery County.

The politicians have taken over Hometown Holidays in Rockville while the politicians in Rockville still find themselves trying to climb out of a scandal born from years of neglecting the city employees there.

While crime is down the county police want more police officers and a bigger budget.

As the thermometer creeps back up to boiling and tempers threaten to flare over speed cams, school principals, bag taxes, ambulance fees, pedestrian accidents, the I.C.C and God only knows what else, I can’t help but wonder:

Where is Rodney Dangerfield when you need him?

Reader Comments - 4 Total

captcha 367acc7dcc2849029f703952c2374dd6

Posted By: Mom On: 6/14/2013

Title: Follow Up?

Brian could you follow up? are they going to remove the principal from Kemp Mill or will he stay? I am hearing conflicting stories. I am also hearing there will be another lawsuit against him. Is there anything to that? I understand there is an activist working on a fund for therapy for victims.

Posted By: Brian's 10th-grade English Teacher On: 6/13/2013

Title: I think you need to re-read your Cliff Notes

Posted By: Concerned On: 6/11/2013

Title: Is the principal still at the school?

I am hearing various outcomes - is the principal at the school or not? Shouldn't he be kept away from children?

Posted By: Mom On: 5/30/2013

Title: The closet children

Good story Brian. The principal's deposition admitted to taking at least 4-6 children into closests. He currently takes a child into the closet for tutoring on Saturadays. We know that multiple children from Kemp Mill have gone to psychiatric institutions - suicidality, depression, anxiety, school avoidance - and we know that many of the Kemp Mill children have gone through group therapy with local professionals. Hide the Child indeed.


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