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  #21  
Old 20 January 2018, 04:08 PM
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My school district had a zero-tolerance policy for drugs and alcohol; the penalty was involuntary transfer to the neighboring school, disrupting your education (no guarantee you'd get into the same classes mid-year, to say nothing of extracurriculars) and your social life. It always struck me as an incredibly ill-conceived policy--let's take a kid (more often a group of kids) who got caught drinking once and rip them away from their support system and all the things that kept them busy and put them in a lonely, scary situation with only their fellow expelled drinking buddies and a bunch of strangers who know them only as the kids who got drunk and whom they'll be desperate to fit in with. That'll keep them dang whippersnappers away from the giggle water!

Anyway, no one asked me, and over the years countless kids--mostly poor and minority kids, because the rich white kids had safe places to experiment far from school grounds--were kicked out of school for smoking a little pot behind the bleachers or similar. These transfers garnered little attention; in a school of about 2200 students, with most classrooms comprising 30 or more students each period, you might fail to notice the kids who disappeared unless you happened to be personally acquainted with them.

Then at the start of my sophomore year, the ASB (student government) kids got drunk at leadership camp. It was a huge scandal that garnered lots of attention, because this was a different crop of kids than those who usually got swept up in these things; they were all wealthy, white or Asian, high-achieving, headed to the Ivies, and they all had parents willing and able to call down hellfire on anyone who would mess with their babies' futures. You can probably see where this is going. The administration buckled. They made noncommittal noises about needing to investigate further. They said they were going to revisit the policy, and spent months crafting what turned out to be an identical rule. In the meantime they quietly let all those kids off the hook completely. Then they went right back to quietly expelling the black and brown and working-class white kids.

I suppose in a way it might have planted the first seeds that led me toward activism and social justice work. I was a Good Kid who never got in trouble and was always eager to please adults. It took witnessing stuff like this to make me realize that goodness was not synonymous with rule-following, because too often the rules are there to protect the powerful at the expense of the vulnerable.
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  #22  
Old 22 January 2018, 12:33 PM
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DawnStorm DawnStorm is offline
 
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Ambulance

The Romeo and Juliet Incident 1979
The English teachers took the whole 9th grade class (including yours truly) to a private showing of Romeo and Juliet. [this was when 9th graders were still in junior high school] It did not go well, but what do you expect when the movie opens up with a bunch of guys in tights? Apparently beer was smuggled in, and the imbibers sat in the back. As they finished the beers, they set the bottles on the floor. Apparently one of the kids knocked a bottle over, it rolled down the floor and right under a teacher's foot....
By that time, half the class was pretty much drunk and some of them to the point where they had to be taken to the hospital. That's of the top of the smoking and the MST3K razzing of the movie itself. I think the only ones who where actually watching the movie were my two friends. Good luck with that as the audio sucked rotten eggs. I fell asleep but was awakened by everybody hooting and hollering about a bedroom scene.
A few years later, when I was in high school, my English teacher wanted to take her class to see Tess (IIRC) but was talked out of it by other teachers. When we asked her why we weren't going, she cited that by-now infamous day. [there was a class that went to see Romeo and Juliet...] We all got real quiet because just about everybody in the class was there on That Day back in '79. Teacher put two and two together and was shocked.

Last edited by DawnStorm; 22 January 2018 at 12:40 PM.
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  #23  
Old 22 January 2018, 02:20 PM
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Seaboe Muffinchucker Seaboe Muffinchucker is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by UEL View Post
Final high school had one of my fellow graduating classmates die in a horse riding accident.
The summer after high school graduation, two of my classmates committed suicide. That made a big impact on me.

By the time of my 10th reunion, another had been murdered, and a fourth had died from a fall. The last was in my law school class; she'd fallen down some stairs and ended up hospitalized with a head injury. After she was released from the hospital, she went home, slipped into a coma, and died.

I went to high school in a town with a single high school, and was in the largest graduating class in many, many years (there were 178 of us).

Seaboe
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  #24  
Old 22 January 2018, 06:18 PM
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DawnStorm, I never knew other schools arranged private showings of Romeo and Juliet for their ninth-graders. Nothing happened at ours except the catcalls during the bedroom scene.
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  #25  
Old 22 January 2018, 06:31 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Little Pink Pill View Post
In my high school a guy peed into a light socket and knocked out the electricity, leaving us all in the dark.
This wasn't really a huge incident, but in my first period class my sophomore year we had a joker who thought it was funny to stick an unbent paper clip in the electrical outlet every morning before the teacher arrived (using an eraser to insulate it from his hand) and watch the sparks fly. Of course this tripped the circuit breaker, so he could only do it once each morning. And the teacher kept having to get the custodian to go reset the breaker if she needed to use the outlet for an overhead projector or something. I don't know if she ever knew why the breaker kept getting tripped.
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  #26  
Old 22 January 2018, 06:43 PM
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We had a food fight my senior year. I participated. I'm pretty sure my mom was still mad at me about it when she died, 32 years later. Once we were watching something on TV about an elite athlete who got caught using drugs, and she said "That's almost as bad as what you did."
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  #27  
Old 22 January 2018, 10:47 PM
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I don't know if we had a real "incident". However, I can think of two things that people would actually still remember, if I still bothered to talk to anyone I went to high school with.

1.) Sometime during my sophomore or junior year, my friend Stig* died in a motorcycle accident - he was riding on the back of the bike his father was piloting, and IIRC it was hit by a car. Stig was pretty awesome, and while not super popular was one of those guys you always wanted to talk to and didn't treat anyone badly. A real loss.

2.) A guy named Joe managed to set the building on fire. There was a hole in the wall of one of the classrooms (actually, there were a number of them all over the place - people would punch the wall or something and leave a dent or crack in the drywall, and it took forever for the school to get them fixed. This in a fairly wealthy district). Anyway, people would shove paper and crap down in there, and one day Joe dropped a match in there for some reason. I remember this one because the alarms went off, we all thought it was a drill, then trucks turned up.

*his actual name. Nobody believes me when I say I had a friend named Stig.

Quote:
Originally Posted by smittykins View Post
DawnStorm, I never knew other schools arranged private showings of Romeo and Juliet for their ninth-graders. Nothing happened at ours except the catcalls during the bedroom scene.
I vaguely recall our school having an edited version of that film, that they'd made by dubbing it from the original VHS cassette. I can't recall if we had to still fill out a permission slip to watch it (wasn't it rated R?).
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  #28  
Old 22 January 2018, 10:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Roadsterboy View Post
I


I vaguely recall our school having an edited version of that film, that they'd made by dubbing it from the original VHS cassette. I can't recall if we had to still fill out a permission slip to watch it (wasn't it rated R?).
I think we saw a 1968 version.
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  #29  
Old 22 January 2018, 10:52 PM
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Originally Posted by Lainie View Post
We had a food fight my senior year. I participated. I'm pretty sure my mom was still mad at me about it when she died, 32 years later. Once we were watching something on TV about an elite athlete who got caught using drugs, and she said "That's almost as bad as what you did."
sounds like my mother. I had long forgotten an incident I was involved with in high school, a relatively minor incident I should add!!, and then a few months ago my mother brought it up in a "where did I go wrong raising this one" kind of way. Sigh.
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  #30  
Old 22 January 2018, 10:54 PM
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Throw Tomato

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Originally Posted by Sue View Post
sounds like my mother. I had long forgotten an incident I was involved with in high school, a relatively minor incident I should add!!, and then a few months ago my mother brought it up in a "where did I go wrong raising this one" kind of way. Sigh.

When I entered junior high school, my brother regaled me with tales of him skateboarding down the hall with friends, using pea shooters in class, etc. My mother heard this and just gawped. She had no idea!
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  #31  
Old 22 January 2018, 11:08 PM
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I did think of one thing, again not quite an "incident".

So the building I went to high school in was built in 1977, replacing the existing school (which is still in use as a middle school), and is still used as one of two high schools serving the district (they renamed mine "Suburban School East", the new one being "West" - the area's grown that much since the 90's). Anyway, the building is quite a sprawling thing, including the actual school gyms, an arts center with theater, indoor track with basketball/soccer facilities, and an attached park district rec center (this was already extant when the school was built, I believe). So when I went there in the late 80's and early 90's, this was still a fairly new building.

About ten years after I graduated, the school had to close down for a year long renovation because they discovered a widespread black mold problem. Bear in mind I suffered pretty consistent respiratory problems for the four years I went there, as did a lot of others. See my previous story of there being frequent holes in the walls.

Anyway, when someone asks me if I went to East or West, I tell them "the moldy one".
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  #32  
Old 22 January 2018, 11:13 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DawnStorm View Post
When I entered junior high school, my brother regaled me with tales of him skateboarding down the hall with friends
When I was a kid my grandmother was the librarian at a grade school near here. Every once in a while during the summer or on a weekend, she'd have to go in to do some work, and if my sister and I (or any of the grandkids) were visiting, she'd take us along (none of us went to this school, by the way). Nobody was ever there when we were, except occasionally the custodial staff.

Let me tell you, there is absolutely nothing better than riding a skateboard through the halls of a school, except maybe riding your bicycle through the halls of a school.
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  #33  
Old 22 January 2018, 11:47 PM
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Fight

When I was in high school we had a short, stocky, soft-spoken, "everybody's friend" principal, Mr. A--.

Well one day two senior boys got into a big fight in one of the halls, and Mr. A-- grabbed each by the shirt collar and hurled them apart, almost effortlessly. It was amazing! No one had ever seen Mr. A-- so much as raise an eyebrow and certainly not his voice, so this rather effective display of physical strength and coolness under fire became legendary.
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  #34  
Old 23 January 2018, 12:59 AM
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smittykins smittykins is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DawnStorm View Post
I think we saw a 1968 version.
That's the one we watched; we walked to our town's(now long-closed)movie theatre.
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  #35  
Old 23 January 2018, 11:18 AM
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Tsk, Tsk

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Originally Posted by smittykins View Post
DawnStorm, I never knew other schools arranged private showings of Romeo and Juliet for their ninth-graders. Nothing happened at ours except the catcalls during the bedroom scene.
Animal House was playing in the adjacent theater; we probably would have been better off seeing that! Considering what did happen, much of the class had probably already seen it.
I remember the whole 9th grade being punished by having things like the year-end class picnic (crap like that) being taken away, but I also remember the whole class apologizing, some people staying after school to clean up the graffiti on the walls, being really punctual for class, etc. I think they got everything back. I wasn't interested in any of that stuff and besides, I had nothing to apologize for.
I do remember one thing: the English teachers lecturing everybody and informing everybody that they had spent half the movie getting in touch with parents and hospitals. Gads what a disaster!
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  #36  
Old 23 January 2018, 11:55 AM
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There was also an incident on a school club trip. The French club sponsored a trip to Quebec City. We were given what in hindsight is a surprising amount of freedom. There were morning and evening group activities, but we were completely on our own during the afternoons.

We were scheduled to go visit an historic military site (La Citadelle, probably), but on our first day, two guys decided they didn't want to wait to see it with the group. So they went by themselves -- and climbed over the earthworks to get in, instead of going to the gate. Since the site was also an active military base, this caused quite a stir.

Somehow they avoided being sent back home, possibly for practical reasons. But they incurred the wrath of Mme. Hanna, who was une femme formidable.
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  #37  
Old 23 January 2018, 02:09 PM
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My, we must have been well behaved, at least when the teachers were present. We went to see Romeo and Juliet -- it probably was in 1968 -- and absolutely nothing out of the way happened. Nobody even catcalled at Romeo's bare butt.

There was the time some reporters came to the school to do an article on drug use in schools. They got one report from the headmaster and teachers: oh no, no such thing going on here! Then they went and spoke to some of the students. And some of the students told them the truth . . .

(I don't remember the results of that; I think the students succeeded in remaining anonymous, and all that happened was that we all got yelled at in assembly, less for drug use than for telling reporters -- I think the administration was still claiming there wasn't actually any drug use and the students had lied for the fun of it. However, long after the expiration of the statute of limitations, I will cheerfully testify (though I wasn't one of those asked at the time): yes, there were students using drugs at the school.)
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  #38  
Old 23 January 2018, 02:10 PM
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Seaboe Muffinchucker Seaboe Muffinchucker is offline
 
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Originally Posted by DawnStorm View Post
I think we saw a 1968 version.
When that version was originally released it was rated M, based I believe on a quick glimpse of Olivia Hussey's breasts and a much longer view of Leonard Whiting's behind. My sister saw it under this rating.

When it was re-released, I believe the rating was PG-13. I saw it with this rating.

This is based on personal recollection, so if someone knows better, feel free to chime in.

Seaboe
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  #39  
Old 23 January 2018, 02:13 PM
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GenYus234 GenYus234 is offline
 
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Originally Posted by thorny locust View Post
I think the administration was still claiming there wasn't actually any drug use and the students had lied for the fun of it.
Can't say if this happened at your school, but myself and other students did lie and say we were doing drugs when they passed out anonymous surveys. Hopefully it all averaged out with the students that were doing drugs and lied about it the other way.
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  #40  
Old 23 January 2018, 02:15 PM
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In my school it was Macbeth, we needed a signed form from our parents to see it not because of the violence but because of the completely gratuitous shot of a nude Lady Macbeth. AFAIK they never showed it again.
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