High School Suspends Student for Protesting Remote Learning by Attending Class in Person

By 1010 WINS

NEW YORK (1010 WINS) -- A Long Island, New York high school suspended a senior for five days after he protested its remote learning plan by attending in-person classes on a virtual learning day.

Maverick Stow, 17, showed up at William Floyd High School in Mastic Beach on Tuesday, despite the fact that he was scheduled to learn remotely that day, ABC7 reported. He received the five-day suspension at the end of the school day, after attending a full day of classes in person.

Stow told the outlet he feels the school shouldn’t be letting COVID-19 concerns keep it from holding in-person classes for all of its students each day. Students at the school alternate between in-person and remote learning on certain days to allow for social distancing.

“I was going to school like students should be going to school,” he said. “I think that a five-day suspension is out of line.”

Stow’s mother and father both said they stood behind his protest. 

“Kids need to be in school every day,” his mother, Nora Kaplan-Stow, told the outlet. “Virtual learning is not learning.” 

In a statement posted to its website on Wednesday, the William Floyd School District said it "agrees with Maverick’s position that school should be held in person five days per week."

"However, we must follow the social distancing requirements set forth by the state; and, when it is deemed safe to do so by our government and health officials, we will gladly welcome all of our 8,800 students back," the district wrote. "It is important for Maverick and his family to understand that we do not set state policy, enact laws or write executive orders, but we do abide by them."

The district said Stow showed up to school on Wednesday morning as well, despite the suspension, and "continued to display insubordinate behavior — even at one point squaring up to a district official and stating that the district would have to 'forcibly remove' him from school grounds."

"As a district, we must work to ensure a safe and disruption-free environment for students who are following the rules and showing up to learn," the district said. "We take school safety seriously and since he has escalated this situation, the police are now involved."

"When a student is suspended off of school grounds for any reason, we cannot and will not tolerate students trying to gain access to our grounds or buildings," it added. "We work extremely hard to ensure the safety of our students and staff."

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