A high school graduate with a 4.3 GPA who is going to Harvard is not only barred from giving his valedictorian speech, but is forced into a psych evaluation.
The last time I wrote about someone being evaluated to see if there was anything wrong with their psychological condition, the person was a police officer who was telling the truth about his fellow officers. It seems that officers use the old Stalinist tactic of questioning the mental health of people who are not cooperating.
I’m somewhat surprised to see the same tactic in a public school setting.
According to Robby Soave at Reason.com,
Lodi High School Senior Devan Solanki is headed to Harvard University next fall. He has a 4.3 GPA. He is the class valedictorian. But administrators at his Bergen County, New Jersey, school won’t let him give the commencement speech at his June 23 graduation—allegedly because he has a history of disciplinary issues. Those issues don’t seem very serious, however, and certainly don’t justify the psychiatric evaluation he was forced to take after tersely asking a counselor for help resolving the dispute over his speech.
Solanki was taken by complete surprise when he was forbidden to give the valedictorian speech. But all he did was go to the student counselor.
He told her, “I’d like to handle this peacefully today.” The counselor took his remark as a threat, and Solanki was suspended. He is not allowed to return to school until he undergoes a psychiatric evaluation.
How many students who are accepted into Harvard and have 4.3 grade point averages are such discipline problems that they must be banned from giving the speech they won the right to give? It looks to me like the mental health screening is being used as a way to teach the student to shut up and obey orders.
If I could talk to Solanki, I would tell him that he needs to count himself fortunate. He is learning early about what the world is really like and what our officials are really like. Meditate on the lesson.
Because I assure you, High School never ends. It’s now the model for all of life.