And Now A Brief Public School KABOOM! From Your Sponsor…


There were fewer Ethics Alarms posts last year about outrageous conduct by public school teachers and administrators. I think this was because my brain was trying to save itself from ending up on the ceiling, as it so frequently does in these KABOOM! inducing stories.

And here is the first one of 2015…

In Gustine, Texas, population 457, there is just one schoolhouse for the elementary school kids. Apparently some incontinent young prankster has repeatedly deposited #2 on the gym floor, and since they had no clues, teachers rounded up two dozen student suspects—some as old as 12–and ordered them  “to pull down their pants” so the teachers could “check them to see if they could find anything.”

I’ll tell you what teachers would find if they tried that on my kid: a criminal complaint and an arrest warrant.

Gustine Independent School District Superintendent Ken Baugh acknowledged that strip searches go  too far. “That’s not appropriate, and we do not condone that.” No, you just hire and train teachers who interact with students without immediately understanding that this is child abuse.

Some angry parents are already planning to show up at the school board meeting to demand that someone be held accountable.

“Maybe we can find a much better way to solve this,” Superintendent Baugh told reporters.

Maybe? Now we know the root of the problem: the superintendent is an idiot, presiding over an idiot-teeming district that hires irresponsible teachers lacking the minimal level of judgment and kindness required of anyone in charge of a child’s safety and welfare.

I don’t know what I would do if I couldn’t home school my child and this nest of incompetents ran the only school in town.

I might just go to the gym and poop there myself.

But I’d leave a note.


Pointer: Alexander Cheezem

Facts: WFAA

30 thoughts on “And Now A Brief Public School KABOOM! From Your Sponsor…

  1. This is fascinating. Gustine is about halfway between Stephenville and Goldthwaite, roughly the Northern edge of Central Texas. And in a very conservative area, and a rural one. I would imagine a few folks will be showing up at the school board meeting with pitchforks, if not more effective persuasion.

  2. Strip searches in Texas public schools are not illegal. It is up to the school’s administrators etc. to weigh the reasonableness of the strip search in light of a student’s fourth amendment rights. You can’t go on a hunting expedition like this school did. There has to be a very, very good chance that you are going to find what you are looking for if a strip search is done in a Texas public school. And in this particular search, it is not likely that the school would find what they were looking for in this search because what they were looking for was ON THE GYM FLOOR.
    Can we finally go on the record in Texas and conclude that there are NO reasonable strip searches in a public school?

      • Parents already need to notify a school if they don’t want corporal punishment used on their kids in districts in Texas which still use it. Parents can address strip searches in the same letter and hope for the best until strip searches are made illegal.

        Please do not hit my child or make him/her take off his clothes.

        Sad that a parent would have to ask for this.

            • It’s called “corporal punishment”. If your kid cusses out a teacher, vandalizes the faculty lounge- or craps on the floor- he deserves to get his butt paddled.

                • So do I. However, it’s impractical to call the parents into school unless it’s REALLY something major. A few “pops” with a paddle can work wonders. Sorry if a got a little uptight, but that “hitting” term is what anti-spanking activists often use to describe any form of corporal punishment, the nuance being that it’s an aggressive and juvenile reaction. It should never be that.

                  • “A few ‘pops’ with a paddle can work wonders.” Correct. And besides, corporal punishment can include non-contact discipline, such as requiring the misbehaver to perform strenuous physical work, e.g., calisthenics. But some defiance justifies use of direct and reasonable force – spanking. Because you’re not gonna stop a hitter by tut-tutting and NOT hitting him. Somebody bigger has to come along and demonstrate superior force.

                    • But it’s not a “might makes right” maneuver. Besides establishing the reality of parental authority in the child’s mind, there has to be the big factor of personal responsibility and the consequences of one’s actions. The final goal of all child discipline is to establish a sense of self-discipline. Otherwise, your future adult never fully matures and goes to work for the New York Times!

                  • Regrettably, I used to work, for a VERY short time, for CPS, and their definition of abuse included spanking, making the assertion that spanking NEVER works.

  3. What is this, amateur hour? You put the poop in a bag, set it on fire, and fling it at the superintendent’s front door. No need to subject innocent kids to your excrement.

  4. When I saw this story yesterday, I initially thought it was from the Onion, clearly thinking that this was too bizarre to be real. Alas, no. It was a real story. Thankfully, I don’t have a child in that school. There would be a whole lot more on the gym than what was reported, starting with administration officials’ teeth, arms, legs, etc. Doesn’t somebody in that school have enough common sense to say, “Um . . . Mr. Ken . . . Uh . . . I don’t wanna be all nitpicky like, but this doesn’t sound like a real good idea to me. What do you think? Should we strip search MINORS in PUBLIC (without parental consent or advice, never mind the laws) to see which one of these little darlins’ a-been a-defiling our sacred gymnasium floor?” Maybe common sense ain’t all that common anymore.


      • The adult behavior in this incident is so far removed from anything remotely “normal” or “a good idea” considering what they were looking for when the students were asked to bare their rear ends, I have to wonder if it was actually one (or more) of the adults who left the gifts on the gym floor to begin with.

        • Having thought along exactly the same lines as what you wonder, I had this fantasy of Child Protective Services commandos swooping-in at the moment the strip search was ordered, and ordering the orderers to do the same as they had ordered of the students, right on the spot. Justice!

  5. Dumb? Sure. But it’s not as though Gustine was the axis that Texas revolves around. The town has a population of 500. Gustine High School (the Tigers!) has only 60 students. I could invite them all over to my house for a keg party with room to spare!

  6. We had a student in our school who did something similar except he used the boys restroom floor. A security camera revealed the culprit. He was a child who had. grown up living in a car and then in an abandoned house. He literally had never used a toilet and was afraid of them.

    • Thus proving that culture and background should ALWAYS be considered. On the Navajo reservation, the kids living in dormitories at boarding schools spit on the rugs a LOT. The anglo teachers would go ballistic. Tried explaining that the kids, before coming to the school, lived in hogans, with dirt floors. Most of the teachers were, unhappily, Peace Corps veterans, so I didn’t get very far, but I tried.

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