The middle school has one two-story building. On my way to the upstairs classroom, I encountered a crowd on the stairs. This is generally frowned upon, but as my mind was on other things, I paid it little thought.
As the 8th graders meandered in, it was clear something had wound them up. Conversations clued me in that something was going on besides the minimum day.
One of the girls (without much prompting) explained.
Kayla stole an iPod out of a PE locker. She got caught. Was suspended.
That morning as everyone filtered in, Kayla stood out in front of the school holding a sign explaining her crime. The girl made sure to note that the sign's final statement said something about honking for Kayla. (The girl thought the honking bit was too much.)
The crowd on the stairs? They had a perfect vantage point to watch Kayla.
This surprised me. I didn't think the school's administration went for this sort of thing. The girl said that Kayla's father stood beside her, watching the whole thing.
Oh. It was the parent's idea.
That's kind of diabolically clever.
Kayla returned to school the next day. I made no mention of the incident, but another student did. Kayla looked chagrined, holding her binder over her face. But only one student mentioned it, and the embarrassment lasted less than a minute.
So, what do you think? Clever punishment? Unnecessary humiliation?