You can now read 5 articles in a month for free on BostonGlobe.com. Read as much as you want anywhere and anytime for just 99¢.

letters | punishing a teen designated driver

Time to rethink ‘zero tolerance’

RE “DON’T punish students who give rides to drunk friends” (Editorial, Oct. 19):

The incident involving Erin Cox, the 17-year-old student at North Andover High School who was suspended from the volleyball team after giving a ride to a drunk friend, should prompt a rethinking of rigid school rules. Certainly, there must be strict rules against inappropriate behavior. But state legislators and local authorities can’t foresee every possible situation that may arise when these rules are enforced.

Continue reading below

As a former teacher, I was subject to very explicit “lockdown” rules and procedures necessitated by the recent tragedies in schools across the country. When in lockdown, I was required to secure the door to my room and keep the children inside. Since my room had only one exit door and no windows allowing for any possible escape, I’ve often wondered what I might have done if I believed it was in the best interest of the children to flee to the school exit door, just 15 feet away.

At some point in time, decisions need to be made based on experience, logic, and knowledge of the situation at hand. If I had fled with my students and led them to safety, would I have been reprimanded for not following the rules?

Every situation is different and should be handled on an individual basis. Unless there are unknown facts contributing to the suspension decision, Fox should be reinstated. Zero-tolerance procedures will, at some point, condemn the innocent.

J. Silverstein

Melrose

Loading comments...
Subscriber Log In

We hope you've enjoyed your 5 free articles'

Stay informed with unlimited access to Boston’s trusted news source.

  • High-quality journalism from the region’s largest newsroom
  • Convenient access across all of your devices
  • Today’s Headlines daily newsletter
  • Subscriber-only access to exclusive offers, events, contests, eBooks, and more
  • Less than 25¢ a week
Marketing image of BostonGlobe.com
Marketing image of BostonGlobe.com
Already a subscriber?
Your city. Your stories. Your Globe.
Yours FREE for two weeks.
Enjoy free unlimited access to Globe.com for the next two weeks.
Limited time only - No credit card required!
BostonGlobe.com complimentary digital access has been provided to you, without a subscription, for free starting today and ending in 14 days. After the free trial period, your free BostonGlobe.com digital access will stop immediately unless you sign up for BostonGlobe.com digital subscription. Current print and digital subscribers are not eligible for the free trial.
Thanks & Welcome to Globe.com
You now have unlimited access for the next two weeks.
BostonGlobe.com complimentary digital access has been provided to you, without a subscription, for free starting today and ending in 14 days. After the free trial period, your free BostonGlobe.com digital access will stop immediately unless you sign up for BostonGlobe.com digital subscription. Current print and digital subscribers are not eligible for the free trial.