Opinion Matters

With Gazette Opinion Editor Greg Peck

What sexual activity could get you expelled?

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Greg Peck
Tuesday, July 9, 2013

When I was a kid, my dad criticized my habit of watching the television series “Happy Days.” That was milk toast compared to the stuff on prime time today. For example, have you ever watched “Two and a Half Men?”

Our society sends children countless messages about sex every day. Kids are exposed to sex in the latest fashions, in advertisements and in TV shows and movie theaters. Perhaps this barrage sends students the signal that it’s OK to slip behind the school bleachers and engage in consensual sex.

This school year, the Janesville district expelled five students for sexual activity. None of the incidents involved assault, officials say, and five sex-related expulsions are an unusually high number. Other than that, the district is tight-lipped. Officials won’t reveal the exact number of incidents, the school or schools, ages or even genders of the students involved.

Attorney Sara Gehring, the district’s expulsion hearing officer, argues that to provide more details would violate students’ privacy rights and a state law governing release of student records.

The Gazette doesn’t want to identify anyone or print salacious details. Doesn’t the public, however, have a right to at least know the nature of the activity—enough to weigh whether our elected school board members who make the ultimate expulsion rulings are justified in their decisions? We’ll share our perspectives in our editorial Wednesday.

Greg Peck can be reached at (608) 755-8278 or gpeck@gazettextra.com. Or follow him on Twitter or Facebook

Last updated: 8:25 am Monday, July 29, 2013

Greg Peck can be reached at (608) 755-8278 or gpeck@gazettextra.com. Or follow him on Twitter or Facebook.

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