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Education news and notes from Tampa Bay and Florida

Facebook group gets Pensacola teen booted from her school

11

August

Bilde Ask most middle schoolers, and they'll probably tell you they hate school.

In this day of social networking, they'll probably tell you on MySpace, or Facebook, or Twitter.

But that doesn't have to mean that their school will like it. Pensacola eighth-grader Marie Couto found that out the hard way.


The girl started a Facebook group called I HATE MONTESSORI. The Montessori School of Pensacola, where she attended, promptly expelled her, sending her parents back the tuition money they had paid. The reason? It was apparent, based on Marie's online comments, that the school was not a good match for the girl.

Her mother told the Pensacola News-Journal that she understood that the private school had the right to dump her daughter. But, she added, it shouldn't have. "It was too drastic of a measure," Veronica Couto said.

So there you have it. Something kids have said for years now have a shelf life on the Internet instead of disappearing as soon as the words are spoken. And a school reacts.

Or is it overreacts? We know that young teens don't always think smart — heck, isn't that usually the biggest lament about middle schoolers, that they're hormonal and moody and that's why they're often hard to reach?

Our question to you, then, is who's right? The school? Or the mom? And for extra credit, can we (should we) be encouraging kids to keep their opinions to themselves — or at the very least off the Internet?

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[Last modified: Tuesday, May 25, 2010 10:31am]

    

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