Volleyball captain punished for being leader

It’s a situation many of us have been in. You get a call from a friend on a Friday night that has had a few too many and needs a ride home.

It’s a situation many of us have been in.

You get a call from a friend on a Friday night that has had a few too many and needs a ride home. Recognizing your friend has made the right decision by calling you instead getting behind the wheel anyway, you make the easy decision and pick them up, knowing the few minutes of inconvenience is a small price to pay for the safety of your friend and everyone else on the road.

Doubtlessly, that was what 17-year-old Erin Cox was thinking when she got such a message from her friend who was intoxicated at a party. However, things for Cox turned out much differently than one would expect.

Cox, an honour student and captain of North Andover High School volleyball team in North Andover, Massachusetts, was stripped of her title of captain and suspended for five games after driving her drunk friend home from a party.

After receiving a text from her friend who needed a ride, Cox arrived at the party around the same time police were breaking it up. Police arrested several of the partygoers and charged them with underage drinking, but confirmed that Cox was not drunk, nor drinking and was only there to pick up her friend. For some reason, the testimony from a police officer who was actually at the party was not good enough for the school and Cox was punished for doing the right thing and keeping a drunk driver off the roads. There are so many things wrong with this I barely know where to start. First off, Cox never violated the school’s zero-tolerance policy.

That policy is against drug and alcohol use.

Cox was not drinking, nor was she using drugs. So, how exactly did she violate a policy against using drugs or alcohol without at all using either of those substances?

Secondly, Cox is being punished for an incident that took place outside of school hours, off school grounds and as far as I’m concerned nowhere near the school’s jurisdiction. By what right exactly is the school punishing a student for something that has nothing to do with schooling itself ?

Finally, the third issue with Cox’s suspension is so messed up I can scarcely believe it. The only reason Cox went to that party at all was to stop her drunk friend from driving home, something that is commended as the act of a Good Samaritan. Except of course when schools decide to play politics and punish students for arbitrary reasons. Playing politics and using the ‘it’s our policy’ defense doesn’t even make sense here because Cox didn’t break that policy and didn’t do anything wrong.

I could maybe begin to understand North Andover High School’s actions if the reputation of school was besmirched in any way by this incident, but it wasn’t. It’s not like photos of Cox at the party in her volleyball uniform or other such school attire were posted all over the Internet, because we would have seen them if that was the case.

If anything, the school’s reputation has improved with this incident exposing that the school produces such stand-up students. Well, that is, it would have improved until that school decided to punish such students.

Think of the irony. Schools are institutions created to educate. We hope from this education that they grow into responsible adults.

But children learn more from schools than just what is taught by the formal lessons in the classrooms. They also learn things by how the school conducts its business and treats its students.

What Cox did would be seen by many (in fact, most of the population I would hope) to be a responsible action, but she was punished for it. Just what do you think students are learning from that?

news@reddeerexpress.com

 

Just Posted

The City of Red Deer sits at 249 active cases of the virus, after hitting a peak of 565 active cases on Feb. 22. (Black Press file image)
Red Deer down to 119 active COVID-19 cases

Province identifies 179 new cases Saturday

Member Terry Parsons’ custom built track vehicle.
Forestburg’s Area 53 Racetrack gears up for action-packed season

Site will also host a portion of the ‘Miles of Mayhem’ event in July

Alberta’s chief medical officer of health Dr. Deena Hinshaw reported five additional deaths Wednesday due to COVID-19. (File photo by Chris Schwarz/Government of Alberta)
Red Deer at 169 active cases of COVID-19

Province set to move into Stage 2 of reopening Thursday

At an outdoor drive-in convocation ceremony, Mount Royal University bestows an honorary Doctor of Laws on Blackfoot Elder and residential school survivor Clarence Wolfleg in Calgary on Tuesday, June 8, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
‘You didn’t get the best of me’: Residential school survivor gets honorary doctorate

Clarence Wolfleg receives honorary doctorate from Mount Royal University, the highest honour the school gives out

Flowers and cards are left at a makeshift memorial at a monument outside the former Kamloops Indian Residential School to honour the 215 children whose remains are believed to have been discovered buried near the city in Kamloops, B.C., on Monday, May 31, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
‘Pick a Sunday:’ Indigenous leaders ask Catholics to stay home, push for apology

Indigenous leaders are calling on Catholics to stand in solidarity with residential school survivors by not attending church services

“They will never be forgotten, every child matters,” says Sioux Valley Chief Jennifer Bone in a video statement June 1. (Screen grab)
104 ‘potential graves’ detected at site of former residential school in Manitoba

Sioux Valley Dakota Nation working to identify, repatriate students buried near former Brandon residential school

Denmark’s Christian Eriksen receives medical attention after collapsing during the Euro 2020 soccer championship group B match between Denmark and Finland at Parken stadium in Copenhagen, Saturday, June 12, 2021. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner, Pool)
Christian Eriksen in stable condition, Euro 2020 match resumes

Eriksen was given chest compressions after collapsing on the field during a European Championship

As stories of the horrors of residential schools circulate after the Tk’emlups te Secwepemc First Nation announced it had located what are believed to be the remains of 215 children, Grand Chief Stewart Phillip of the Union of B.C. Indian Chiefs said he feels a connection with the former students. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
2 sides of the same coin: Ex-foster kids identify with residential school survivors

Grand Chief Stewart Phillip says the child welfare system takes Indigenous children from their families

Airport ground crew offload a plane carrying just under 300,000 doses of the single-shot Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine which is developed by the Janssen Pharmaceutical Companies at Pearson International Airport during the COVID-19 pandemic in Toronto on Wednesday, April 28, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
1st batch of Johnson & Johnson vaccines won’t be released in Canada over quality concerns

The vaccines were quarantined in April before they were distributed to provinces

Grade 12 students at Wetaskiwin Composite High School took place in the annual water fight off school property on June 11, 2021. Shaela Dansereau/ Pipestone Flyer.
Graduating students in Wetaskiwin throw water fight after being told it could result in suspension

Students were told their participation could result in them being barred from graduation ceremonies.

The arrest south of Winnipeg occurred before Bernier was to arrive at a protest in the city. (Twitter/Maxime Bernier)
Maxime Bernier arrested following anti-rules rallies in Manitoba: RCMP

He’s been charged with exceeding public gathering limits and violating Manitoba’s requirement to self-isolate

Most Read