Teacher Suspended For Showing Kids Pliers

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A veteran Chicago teacher is suing the school district after he was suspended and charged with possessing tools that school officials said violated their weapons policy.
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Doug Bartlett, a second grade teacher at Washington Irving Elementary School, was suspended for four days after administrators determined the tools he used for visual aids endangered students.
In 2011 Bartlett was teaching a mandated course on “tools.” He showed students several tools that he used in his classroom including wrenches, screwdrivers, pliers, a box cutter, and a small pocketknife. He explained how the tools were used and kept the items secured in a tool box.
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“The visual aids were used in an effort to facilitate student understanding and remembrance of the curriculum,” the lawsuit states. “As he displayed the box cutter and pocketknife, Plaintiff specifically described the proper use of these tools. Neither of these items was made available to the students.”
Several days later, the 17-year veteran teacher received a notice that he was under investigation for possessing, carrying, storing and using a weapon – and for negligently supervising children. He was then suspended four days without pay.
John Whitehead, president of The Rutherford Institute, filed a federal lawsuit on Bartlett’s behalf claiming his civil rights were violated.
“This school district’s gross overreaction to a simple teaching demonstration on basic tools such as wrenches and pliers underscores exactly what is wrong with our nation’s schools,” Whitehead said. “Education truly suffers when school administrators exhibit such poor judgment and common sense.”
A spokesman for the City of Chicago School District 299 did not return calls seeking comment.
Whitehead said Bartlett is the victim of a zero tolerance policy “run amok.”
The lawsuit claims the teacher had no idea that he could be subjected to disciplinary action for possessing common household tools in a classroom discussion that was mandated by the district.
Bartlett wants his record expunged as well as a financial settlement.
http://radio.foxnews.com/toddstarnes/top-stories/teacher-suspended-for-showing-kids-pliers.html
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wrote:

Ban Chicago, annex it to Canada.
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That's a damn good idea! I bet my Illinois taxes would go down then.
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That about sums it up doesn't it? One can only imagine all the other harm that those administrators running the school are doing to those children every day with all the other dumb things they must be imposing.
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On 4/23/13 1:47 PM, Metspitzer wrote:

So at least a couple of the kids were probably better "armed" than the teacher.
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From where did utility knives get the silly name "box cutter"? And how come I only ever see this phrase in the media? Is it because the only time reporters have ever seen a utility knife is in the grocery store?
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Tegger

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I don't know what they use to open the boxes with now in the stores. About 45 years ago when I was a stock boy in a grocery store we had box cutters. There were several designs, but they were made to have a single edge razor blade in them. They were often made of a relative flat piece of steel that held the blade and there was another flat tube that held that part. You pulled the blade holder up into the sheath part when not in use and a tap on the leg would extend the blade part when needed. Most often it was held in then hand so that you put your thumb over the top of the box an used it as a guide.
Could make a dandy weapon for making shallow cuts about an inch or so deep. It was about 4 or 5 inches long with the blade extended.
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But did you call them "box cutters" or "utility knives"?
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The real crime is that the kids aren't learning to use the tools, only watching someone else demonstrate them.
Starting in third grade we had shop class.
Just checked my former school system's curriculum. They still have art, but no shop.
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Yes, we called them box cutters. Staples has them for sell now, listed as box cutter. http://www.staples.com/Staples-Box-Cutter/product_506873
Item: 506873 Model: 17548-CC/610137
This one is shown as the blade extended. It will push back up in the outer part to make it safe to carry. It is mainly for cutting cardboard boxes.
The utility knives are much heavier and use a differant type of blade. Made to cut much thicker material.
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I see that on the same page they are also described as "Portable pocket-size utility knife".
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wrote:

We called the box cutters because that is what they were designed to do. The ones we used gave minimal exposure of the blade so you could cut the box and not the contents. They were not utility knives and could not perform the same tasks. This was 50 years ago for me. They may be different now.
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The first "box cutters" I saw had the blade set parallel, and about 1/2" down from a flat plate. The blade protruded about 1/4" from the handle. The idea was to only cut the box (thus only 1/4" of blade protruding) about 1/2" down from the top. Basically, it decapitated the box. What's now known as "box cutters", I've always known as "utility knives", including the one shown above.
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snipped-for-privacy@attt.bizz wrote in

I've been using utility knives almost daily since 1980 (OLFA L-series is my favorite). I had never heard or seen ANY type of utility knife referred to as "box cutters" until after 9/11.
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On 4/24/2013 12:38 PM, Tegger wrote:

Razor edged airliner hijack implementation devices. ^_^
TDD
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They get the Muslim Seal of Approval!
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On 4/24/2013 5:17 PM, Tegger wrote:

Razor Edged Airliner Hijack Implementation Devices, REAHID, it even looks and sounds like an Arabic word. ^_^
TDD
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Also called Muslim boarding pass. . Christopher A. Young Learn more about Jesus www.lds.org . .

Razor Edged Airliner Hijack Implementation Devices, REAHID, it even looks and sounds like an Arabic word. ^_^
TDD
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wrote:

Technically, a "box cutter" is the little spring loaded flip-out key-tag knife that allows you to extend the blade with your thumb to open a box, and the blade automagically retracts into the case so you can safely put it back in your pocket. like this: http://www.trigoninternational.ca/wp-content/uploads/2011/06/2004-Safety-Cutter-Key- or like this:
http://blog.sndimg.com/hgtv/design/farima/what-the-02-29-box-cutter.jpg
What everybody refers to as a box cutter today is a utility knife
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me

When I was introduced to this knife, it was called a 'matting knife' and we were even shown how to properly use it. As in, don't try to make the cut with a single stroke, cut over and over until through the material.
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