A New Trend in Schools

The term “Zero Tolerance” appears in a True story for the first time.

A 6-year-old is suspended from kindergarten(!) for daring to bring a knife to school to murder his classmates. Well, maybe that’s not exactly what he had in mind.

Here’s the story, from the 11 June 1995 issue:

Zero Tolerance

A Providence, R.I., kindergarten student has been suspended for 10 days for bringing a knife to school — a table knife, which he brought to cut his morning cookie with. “It was on his person, not in his lunch bucket,” the Pawtucket school superintendent retorted, defending the school district’s “no weapons” policy. The six-year-old has no record of bad behavior and has a good academic record. (AP) …Hell, if the punishment is the same, he may as well bring his Uzi next time.

– – –

It wasn’t too long until I started noting that ZT truly was a true trend — and an awful one at that. Years later as I post this entry to the web, it remains the most-suggested story type in reader story submissions — and we’ve watched it spread beyond schools and into the “real world” …just as I argued would happen from very early on.

Leave a Comment