A student suspended for tweeting negative comments about his school’s sports teams has been suspended for the rest of the year, according to a Tuesday report from The Wichita Eagle.
Senior class president Wesley Teague, a Heights High School athlete himself, sent out a tweet during the school day that read, “‘HeightsU’ is equivalent to WSU’s football team,” referring to the Wichita State University program that went belly-up at the end of the 1986 season.
The news site reported that Teague’s tweet caused a firestorm of negativity among underclassmen, who frequently use the #HeightsU hashtag when referring to their school.
That tweet and a few in which Teague responded to criticism, were enough to get him ousted through the end of the year.
Teague will also not be allowed to give a speech at the senior breakfast and convocation ceremony on Friday. He will be allowed to participate in the school’s commencement ceremony on Sunday, however.
Kirsten Teague, mother to the student suspended for tweeting, plans to appeal the suspension, but with less than a week to go, she’s running out of time. “I think it’s a bit overreacting. … I don’t really think there’s anything wrong with what Wesley did,” she said.
School officials disagree. According to a letter sent home from assistant principal Monique Arndt, “Wesley posted some very inappropriate tweets about the Heights athletic teams, aggressively disrespecting many athletes. … After reading the tweets and taking statements from other students it was found that Wesley acted to incite the majority of our Heights athletes.”
Susan Arensman, Wichita schools spokeswoman, issued an email pointing out “negative reaction from many students, including threats of fights in the school.”
“It caused a major disruption to the school day. Other students were also suspended,” Arensman said, though she was unaware of how many other students were suspended. She was also unaware of the length of those suspensions.
Here’s the offending tweet. Supporters have launched #TeamWesley and #FreeWesley hashtags as a response to the school’s action.
“Heights U” is equivalent to WSU’s football team
— Wesley Teague ✊ (@Rolltide_Teague) May 2, 2013
(You can follow the rest of the drama on Teague’s personal Twitter page.)
If you think this student suspended for tweeting is bad, then you’ll probably also be shocked to learn about two other questionable suspensions this year.
In January, a fifth grader was suspended for bringing a paper gun to school and in February some California students received suspensions for chanting “U.S.A., U.S.A.!” at a local basketball game.
What do you think about Heights High School’s decision on the student suspended for tweeting — good call or complete overreaction?
[Image via ShutterStock]