Uncut: Students, drinking allegations, and the courts

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by JOHN McCAA

Bio | Email | Follow: @johnmccaa

WFAA

Posted on May 31, 2013 at 7:49 PM

Graduation is a big event... so big that not walking the stage with her class had one family taking on their daughter's school district in court.

It's this week's Uncut commentary.

Quick back story: McKinney ISD says more than a dozen teens drank before their senior prom, got caught and admitted it. Their punishment was 30 days of alternative school, which means missing graduation. They get their diplomas, just can't walk the stage.

One student, who had otherwise maintained exceptional grades, sued. She said she never admitted drinking, the investigating officer was never close enough to smell her breath, and the district didn't follow its own rules.

The district said rules about alcohol use are clear, students and parents sign a pledge agreeing to them, and the student did admit drinking, so was never tested.

A judge tossed the lawsuit Friday, one week from graduation.

It seems simple -- if the student was drinking, even a drop (and she and her friends know the answer), it's a no brainer: do the crime, do the time.

Yes, it is a life event and a tough penalty, but a fair one... if she drank. We're not sure, because now, no one's talking.

Two important lessons here: When the kids are right, parents should back them. When they're not, young people really need to know there are consequences for rule breaking.

Those are my thoughts, send me your thoughts at jmccaa@wfaa.com.

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