Another little boy has gotten in trouble at school for having something that represents a gun but isn’t actually anything like a real gun.
This time, eight-year-old Asher Palmer rolled up a piece of paper, called it a gun and pointed it at other kids, reports the New York Post.
Officials at the special-needs school in New York City which Palmer attended then expelled him.
The school is the Lang School, a ritzy private bastion which specializes in educating students with language difficulties. Annual tuition is $51,500.
“Asher is exactly the type of student Lang is supposed to be serving,” the boy’s frustrated mother, Melina Spadone, told the Post. “Why they did this doesn’t make sense.”
The principal at Lang, Micaela Bracamonte – who insists on calling herself the “head of school” – also reportedly informed school employees that eight-year-old Asher “had a model for physically aggressive behavior in his immediate family.”
Spadone isn’t sure who that model would be, but she said she imagines Bracamonte is referring to her husband, who was an American soldier during the Gulf War.
“I find it offensive and inappropriate,” the mad mom told the Post.
Spadone explained that her son, a first grader, fashioned the rolled-up piece of paper after he talked with his father about weapons used in the military.
Asher’s teachers didn’t take the piece of paper away. Instead, they just warned him not to point the menacing piece of paper at anyone.
Eventually, of course, he pointed the piece of paper at another kid.
School officials have also claimed that he declared that he would “kill” a girl, apparently in a separate incident. Consequently, Bracamonte alleged that the little boy had a “concrete plan” for killing another student.
Spadone suggested that her eight-year-old son likely wasn’t using the word “kill” literally.
Also, like the other kids at Lang, Asher has communication problems so he might have trouble getting his point across. Specifically, has been diagnosed with ADHD and speech issues.
The angry mother said she and her husband have spent almost $120,000 for tuition and one-on-one tutoring at Lang so far – in just five months – with the understanding that he would attend the school long-term.
“We did not invest $120,000 toward Asher’s success for a five-month period,” she vented at the principal in an email obtained by the Post. “It was understood, and, in fact, contractually agreed, that Asher would be returning next year.”
But Bracamonte informed her that the “use of pretend guns on fellow students and mention of killing” was enough to warrant the boy’s expulsion.
The principal, who has refused to speak to the press, also advised home-schooling for Asher.
Spadone works at a private equity firm. She and her husband are currently in the midst of a divorce.
Another parent with a child at the school told the Post that Asher relates to other kids “just fine.”
Asher himself seemed sad about the expulsion. “I like being with my friends,” he told the newspaper.