Published March 09, 2013
A Maryland lawmaker has introduced legislation after a 7-year-old boy in his district was suspended for shaping a pastry into what his teacher thought looked like a gun.
The Star Democrat reports that Republican Sen. J.B. Jennings introduced a bill that would prohibit schools from suspending students for seemingly harmless childish acts, such as playing games with fingers pointed like guns or chewing food into the shape of a firearm.
"These kids can't comprehend what they are doing or the ramifications of their actions," Jennings told the paper. "These suspensions are going on their permanent records and could have lasting effects on their educations."
Josh Welch, a second-grader at Park Elementary School in Baltimore, was suspended last month after his teacher accused him of chewing his pastry into the shape of a gun, according to FoxBaltimore.com.
Jennings told the station that he was shocked when he first heard about the incident and didn't think the story was real.
Jennings' bill would prevent minor incidents, such as the pastry 'gun' suspension, from being entered into a students' permanent academic record, according to The Star Democrat.
He told the paper the legislation includes counseling and disciplinary procedures for school administrators who violate the guidelines on school punishments.