The father of a 7-year-old suspended from his Anne Arundel County school for nibbling his breakfast pastry into the shape of a gun filed a formal appeal Thursday, asking that the second-grader’s school records be wiped clean of the offense.
“The chewed pastry was not capable of harming anybody, even if thrown,” said the appeal, addressed to Anne Arundel Superintendent Kevin M. Maxwell and Park Elementary School Principal Sandy Blondell. “It could not fire any missile whatsoever.”
The case, which attracted national attention, came 11 weeks after the mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., which left 20 children and six staff members dead. In the massacre’s aftermath, sensitivities have been heightened about security and guns, even imaginary ones.
In recent weeks, children have been suspended from school for pointing their fingers like guns and, in one case, for talking about shooting a Hello Kitty gun that blows bubbles. In several cases, the offenses were described in harsh terms — one as a “terroristic threat” — and officials agreed, after appeals, to clear students’ permanent records.