A Massachusetts kindergartener was rushed to the hospital last Thursday after he admitted to teachers that he tasted the contents of the bag he brought to school. Inside the bag, which was stamped with superhero markings, contained a white powder that was later confirmed to be heroin.
Benny Garcia, 29, was arrested later that day, after he was found asleep in his home with 170 bags of heroin around him, as well as bags of cocaine. He’s plead “not guilty” to drug possession and reckless endangerment of a child, when he was arraigned on Friday. The 5-year-old, and an infant sibling, have since been removed from the home. Garcia is being held without bail pending a hearing on November 20.
H.B. Lawrence Elementary School, in Holyoke, MA, is part of Holyoke School District, and serves 285 students in grades K-3. A large majority (91%) of the student population is Hispanic, and 78% of all students qualify as from low-income families. According to GreatSchools, standardized test scores in both reading and math fall way below the state average. The school itself is small and outdated, desperately in need of updating and repairs. The community recently voted down an initiative (which included a property tax increase) to build new schools and take the pressure off some of the smaller, struggling schools.
A 6-year-old in Philadelphia came dangerously close to a drug overdose, today, when she was found by her kindergarten teacher with a bag of cocaine in her mouth. The little girl believed it to be candy. The teacher, undoubtedly having seen something like it before, suspected it was drugs, and alerted the authorities. The child claimed to have gotten it from the backpack a classmate, who denied it. Both children were sent to the nurse, and then sent home (to refill their stash?), and the remaining 20-plus students were searched. No other drugs were found. The school’s essentially calling it “case closed,” because you know, kids will be kids. What 6-year-old hasn’t had a bag of cocaine in their mouth at some point, after all?
Hardy Williams Elementary is a charter school serving grades K-6. On their website, they state: “Hardy Williams is a special place where your child will experience the joy of learning in a safe, positive environment. We focus on 5 core values: respect, responsibility, hard work, teamwork and kindness.” These values were well represented, today:
Respect was shown to the teacher, as the child spit out the “candy” right away, and did not wind up ingesting any.
Responsibility, because hey, the teacher may not have seen where the child actually acquired said bag of “candy,” but at least she got over there in time, right? I smell a Teacher of the Year award.
Hard work, because it’s no easy task being a 6-year-old dealer. Most kindergartners can’t even hold their pencil properly, and these kids are rolling blunts.
Teamwork, because you’ve got to learn early not to rat out your supplier. No one likes a fink.
Kindness, because kindergarten is all about learning how to share, and taking turns. I wonder who’ll get the bag of candy next time?
A “typical day” is outlined on Hardy Williams’s website, including “dressing in full uniform excited to start their day,” and “2-3 hours of reading where they work in small groups. I’d like to propose a few changes to said schedule:
Students come to school dressed in full uniform (complete with extra pockets, for cash, supply, and paraphernalia) excited to find new customers – if only Harvey Williams would add a preschool.
The day starts with free breakfast, and a bong.
Students are greeted by their stoned teacher and head to their classroom for morning report on how much they’ve sold, and which customers just aren’t paying up.
We value reading. Students have at least 2-3 hours of reading IOUs from customers and supply updates from the cartels.
Students have classes in math (bookkeeping – real world connections! and of course measuring and scaling dime bags), social studies (geography – whose corner is whose, and the like), and science (how else are you going to know how to make the “good” meth?).
Students head back to the cafeteria to enjoy free lunch (but that’s the only thing that’s free, here – pay up, Timmy, or you won’t be getting your fix this afternoon).
Afterwards, students enjoy free play or structured recess (whose thumbs should we break first?).
Students engage in art (all those really cool bongs), physical education (running after the squealers), music (when you’re high, everything sounds like music, man) or foreign language (how else are you going to know how to communicate with the cartels down in Mexico?). We are proud to educate the whole child at Mastery (including the part headed straight to prison).
Once the school day is over, students may stay to partake in supervised drug use, because we’re nothing if not responsible.
Rest assured: Hardy Williams Elementary School is within 5 miles of no less than a dozen police stations. I, for one, think all that law enforcement is definitely helping stem the tide of the drug crisis in our nation’s schools.