MONUMENT, Colo. (CBS4) – A girl who borrowed a friend’s asthma inhaler at school has now been expelled.
The incident happened in January at Lewis-Palmer Middle School in Monument. Both the girls and their families are unhappy with the punishment.
The school’s punishment strikes one of the families as uneven justice. The school said the girls broke the district’s drug policy. Their families call the incident an accident and the school’s discipline heavy-handed.
For 10 days Breana Crites and Alyssa McKinney sat at home while suspended from school. The two were in gym class. Crites complained of trouble breathing, so McKinney lent out her asthma inhaler.
“I know what it feels like not to being able to breathe and I know how hard it is and I just took that into consideration,” McKinney said.
The two were sent home. Two weeks later McKinney was allowed to return. Crites however, was expelled.
“She should be back in school,” McKinney said.
“I think absolutely the suspension was appropriate,” Superintendent John Borman told CBS4 in January.
School policy forbids the sharing of any prescription drug. A letter to the students said expulsion was always a possibility. The school district did not return calls about why McKinney was allowed to return but Crites was not.
“The lesson that I learned from this is not to help people, because helping people is just going to get yourself in trouble,” McKinney said.
McKinney father, Tim McKinney, says he doesn’t understand why his daughter’s friend was dismissed in the last semester before high school.
“You work so hard your whole life to instill good morals into your children only for the school to break them,” Tim McKinney said.
Tim McKinney says his daughter was allowed back because he pressed school officials to do so. He says he’s proud and expects his daughter would do the same thing again.
“What they both did was human nature. May daughter was being a good Samaritan. Her friend was having an asthma attack,” he said.
Crites family never returned CBS4’s calls for comment. McKinney was placed on deferred expulsion, meaning one mistake could throw her out of school as well.