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School Expulsion for Vaping

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My Son (15) faces expulsion from his school for vaping. He was previously suspended (2 months ago) for 2 weeks for the same offense and maintains that he is innocent this time. A classmate reported him but my sons account is that while four of his friends were vaping in the classroom, he and one other did not participate. The Principal is vague about when this event took place, with himself and two teachers giving different days for the offense. They produce no evidence for what happened, except to say that an unnamed student reported it. Apparently there is a statement by the unknown student but I am not allowed to see it. I feel that the school should investigate by asking the group of boys individually what happened and who was vaping, but this had not happened at the time his expulsion was announced.

I feel there has been no due process, that the accusation by an unknown witness has not been cross examined and statements from relevant witnesses have not been taken. Expulsion is the most serious disciplinary action that a school can take, it is inappropriate for this offense will have a dramatic impact on my sons ability to keep up with his studies.

The school claim that there was no vaping going on before he joined this semester and conclude that the number of students who vape is somehow my sons responsibility. I feel that vaping has really taken off among kids in Thailand during the past 12 months and that his arrival at the school simply coincided with a growing national trend. Consequently, expulsion is unwarranted and is not justified by the facts.

Thoughts? possible actions to take? As a parent I appear to have no voice in this series of events and do not know where to turn.

It is all happening at 9 am tomorrow morning (Friday 15 Nov).

Edited by revup
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Is your son at a private/international school or a government school?

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I doubt there is much you can do about it, as your son is deemed guilty by association. And going forward you might want to guide him on who he is hanging out with.

 

A couple of weeks suspension won't make much difference to his schooling, just try to ensure that he covers what he has missed. He just needs to keep his nose clean going forward. Sometimes things appear important that over the course of a lifetime are a mere blip. I wouldn't worry about it if I were you.

 

 

 

 

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8 minutes ago, AlexRich said:

I doubt there is much you can do about it, as your son is deemed guilty by association. And going forward you might want to guide him on who he is hanging out with.

 

A couple of weeks suspension won't make much difference to his schooling, just try to ensure that he covers what he has missed. He just needs to keep his nose clean going forward. Sometimes things appear important that over the course of a lifetime are a mere blip. I wouldn't worry about it if I were you.

 

Suspension was for last time.  This time, it's expulsion...

 

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5 hours ago, bkk6060 said:

Sounds like you are making excuses and not making your son take responsibility for his inappropriate actions.

He was busted before so what you think?

 

That may be so. My point is that expulsion is a massive over reaction to something that is very common among students today. He was guilty last time but blameless this time. The school made their minds up and announced the decision based on the says of a single student and without further investigation.

Edited by revup
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5 hours ago, blackcab said:

Is your son at a private/international school or a government school?

An international school in Ramkhamheng.

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4 hours ago, AlexRich said:

I doubt there is much you can do about it, as your son is deemed guilty by association. And going forward you might want to guide him on who he is hanging out with.

 

A couple of weeks suspension won't make much difference to his schooling, just try to ensure that he covers what he has missed. He just needs to keep his nose clean going forward. Sometimes things appear important that over the course of a lifetime are a mere blip. I wouldn't worry about it if I were you.

 

 

 

 

I agree 100 percent. However, they are expelling, not excluding him.

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3 hours ago, Puchaiyank said:

Tough situation to be in...time your son learns there can be severe consequences for repeated violations...

 

Go to plan B for your son's continued education...he is likely marked as damaged goods in that school now...

 

Don't blame school administrators for coming down hard on your son...they have hundreds...if not thousands watching to see if they cave on their discipline policy...🤔

Yes, he will grow out of it, I just feel there has been a single violation of a policy and he is being used as example. On the upside, they want to refund the semesters fees (300,000 k). Plan B is private tutoring followed by a GED equivalency test to get him through high school. Come university, school results are history anyhow.

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4 hours ago, impulse said:

 

Suspension was for last time.  This time, it's expulsion...

 

Problem is that there are five witnesses who confirm that he did not vape. So there there is only the first time. However, the school is not using witness statements.

Edited by revup

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2 hours ago, revup said:
7 hours ago, impulse said:

 

Suspension was for last time.  This time, it's expulsion...

 

Problem is that there are five witnesses who confirm that he did not vape. So there there is only the first time. However, the school is not using witness statements.

 

I'm not passing judgment on whether he did it or not.  Just that the punishment is expulsion, which is a lot more serious than a suspension.

 

If I were to pass any judgment it would be the OP's expectation that there will be "due process" and other niceties we count on in the west.  Eastern philosophy puts a lot more value on the collective than on the individual.

 

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Has your son had other disciplinary problems at the school beyond the two incidents of vaping? Is he a good student and hard worker with good grades, good attendance records, and a good reputation among the staff and administration? Is it possible there has been more trouble and it is now all catching up to him? Or is he a good student getting an overly harsh punishment for a mere (alleged) second offense?

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4 hours ago, blackcab said:

 

This is because it is a school, not an investigative body such as the police. I think you are expecting too much if you believe there should be an investigation based on high standards of evidence. To be fair, most people wouldn't expect that from a real police investigation.

 

I would imagine you are quite disappointed and probably quite angry. I certainly would be in this situation.

 

As I am sure you are aware, the main problem will be applying to other schools/universities in the future. Many will ask about permanent  exclusions, and if you fudge the answer and they find out then they will will probably withdraw their offer.

 

As a typical example, Bangkok Patana asks, "Has your child ever been suspended or permanently excluded from a previous school?" and, "If yes, please provide details".

 

You need to clarify with his former school exactly what statements they will include in any package they provide any future school.

 

If asked, the best course of action would be to have your son own his mistake and explain he has learned his lesson and changed his ways. Saying, "I vaped in school; I made a mistake which I am sorry for. At the time I did not understand the implications of what I did" is one thing.

 

Saying the teachers were unreasonable is another, and it really won't get him very far.

 

Best of luck for you and your son.

Good answer. He had the meeting this morning and he is out. I wanted to see the evidence they say they collected. This time they played a game. They said I could see the evidence, and if it (the statements) showed him to innocent, then he could stay at the school. But if it showed him as guilty, then he would be expelled with bad record and the consequences you describe. However, If we withdrew, they would not expel, so no bad record and they would refund the years fees to us. 300k.

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