If you enter "judge lanny moriarty" into the Google search engine, you will almost instantly have access to 93,000 entries. This number is quite possibly many hundreds of times more than you would have gotten a week ago. This is the result of the Diane Tran case which came before this justice in Texas. Mr. Moriarty fined Miss Tran $100 and threw her in jail for truancy.
Many news services have reported this case, and hundreds of bloggers have addressed the issue. Read about it via your own search.
I am not about to address the issue of idiocy vs. industry. What I will address is the issue of enforcement of rules, the twine that binds Gulliver to immobility.
It is a given that no public school, nor any other school for that matter, can function without rules. It is the case that common sense, discernment, and judgment are often inhibited in the enforcement of the rules by "zero tolerance" mindsets.
Many years ago there was a student, a junior in high school, who was suspended a semester for violation of the school's attendance policy. This punishment and the steps leading up to it were clearly spelled out and ignorance of the rule as excuse is not even a consideration. I became involved when the parent of the child appealed the ruling and the process had arrived at the point of consideration by a hearing officer. I was appointed hearing officer.
I had strong personal feelings about the rule. One of my own children had fallen victim to the rule and suffered the same punishment. But that is not why I found the rule entirely too rigid and objectionable on its face. My position was, and is, that suspension for truancy and/or habitual tardiness is on its face to give the child exactly what he wants, which is to be not in school. How stupid is that?
I was charged with the responsibility of hearing the appeal of the parent and the child vis a vis the alleged violation of the rule. There was no question of the violation. There was no question about the clarity of the rule.