New York City, NY – An elementary school in New York has blocked one of its students from attending her online English classes for “altering and misusing a colloquial phrase”. The suspension is for one week.
Jane Schultz, a fifth-grade student, wrote a fantasy story as part of her English assignment. In the story, a messenger from one kingdom visits the king of another. After delivering the potentially disturbing message, he finishes with the phrase, “Hey, don’t vaccinate the messenger.”
English teacher Philip Cambridge stated: “The phrase ‘Don’t kill the messenger’ is fine in this context. There was no need to change it. I referred the matter to the coordinators according to procedure and, to my knowledge, they referred it to the principal’s office.”
Nevertheless, Jane insisted on having “reasonable artistic liberties”.
“There was no swearing or pointless nudity or violence in the text,” she said, “so I don’t see the problem. Also, I believe it’s a metaphoric phrase, not necessarily a colloquial phrase but I guess it could be considered both… like ‘The English teacher is a pussy’.”
Assistant Principal Craig Mitchell did not respond to requests for comment.
Schultz’s mother is unimpressed. “Online classes are difficult enough and now my daughter misses a week of English because of one line in her story.”
Jane, however, does not seem too worried. “At least I have more time to read something useful and worry about things someone my age should be worried about, like my pervert governor wearing nipple rings or how much the Giants suck.”
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