Education: Tales Out Of School

Strange Stories From The Global Classroom
Click to follow
In detention: Police in the Dutch city of Utrecht caught an unidentified 25-year-old thief who spent more than 48 hours stuck in a crawl space beneath the floor of an elementary school. He'd hidden there when his break-in set off alarms that summoned police. After their search turned up nothing unusual, officers and employees of the alarm company locked every door in the building - including the trapdoor leading to the crawl space. When classes resumed two days later, the man pounded and screamed, but students and teachers could not hear his cries for help through the thick floor. A security guard making routine rounds later that evening heard noises, opened the trapdoor and found the intruder. After a long drink from the nearest tap, he was taken to a doctor and pronounced healthy, then booked at the police station before being sent home.

Gagging order: Irate American mother Kila Currence, complained that her eight-year-old daughter, Ashleigh, was punished for speaking out of turn by having her mouth taped shut and being forced to sit in front of the class for 10 minutes. She said her daughter had not heard a teacher's question and had turned to another student for help. School district authorities said the first-year teacher at North Carolina's Mallard Creek Elementary School was suspended with pay, pending the outcome of an investigation. Later the school's principal apologised to the family.

Death to profanity: Tennessee's Hendersonville High School student handbook declares a more than zero-tolerance of bad language. "Profane language will not be tolerated," it reads. "Stern discipline will be death to any student guilty of this conduct." The US school's principal, Paul Decker, explained that the word "dealt" had been replaced by the word "death" in error.