12-Year-Old Who Got Suspended for Swearing Is Forced to Wear a 'Sign of Shame' (VIDEO)

Heartbreaking 34

kid wearing signEvery time I see a kid being forced to wear a sign in public about how he did something terribly wrong, it makes me feel sad. But the look of utter humiliation and agony on 12-year-old Erol Faustin's face made me feel incredibly sad. It's not that the Florida sixth grader didn't do something wrong -- he did. When he was told to put his backpack away, he cursed at his teacher, calling her a b*tch and said he didn't give a f*ck. Not cool. That's why the school suspended him for three days. Fair enough. 

Except the punishment didn't seem fair, or "enough," to Faustin's mom, Lisette Lopez. So she hopped on the public shaming bandwagon and made him dress up in a suit and hold an enormous sign confessing his crime outside the school every morning and afternoon of his suspension. And he did. In silence, with tears rolling down his face for most of the time.

Remember when I said that it makes me sad every time I see a kid wearing an embarrassing sign in public as a punishment? That was true, but watching Faustin's video is even more heartbreaking because it's like watching HIS heart breaking. (At least when you're watching one of these videos and the kid wearing a sign is still acting like a smartass, you know the experience probably won't leave any deep, lasting emotional scars.)

I'm not judging Lopez -- I'm a mom, I know how challenging the discipline thing can be and how frustrating it is to feel like you've tried everything and STILL your kid won't listen to you. But while some kids can cope with this kind of consequence, others can't. And unfortunately, sometimes you find out which kind of kid you have the hard way.

Do you think this boy deserved public humiliation for what he did?

Image via NY Daily News

behavior, boys, discipline, middle school


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Momma... MommaGreenhalge

I don't get suspension as a punishment for kids like that. Curse at my teacher and get a three day vacation from school? Heck yes! Do I think the mom went astep too far? Probably. But suspension is kind of stupid.

Mary Cimino

I agree with his punishment. It makes the kid take responsibility for his actions which hardly any do these days. It's sad when you think about it because shaming them in front of their friends is pretty much the only way we can get them to listen.

nonmember avatar anonguest

I totally agree with what the mom did. When I was young part of why I tried to not get in trouble is I didn't want to make my parents ashamed of me. Shame can be a very powerful motivator. Too many kids today have absolutely no shame in the way they dress, act, talk, etc. And then we as a society wonder why kids would gang up on an old lady bus monitor...and if I had ever had the audacity to call a teacher b@@@@ much less to f off, oh my gosh....after I had been paddled at school, I would have have a paddling from my grandmother and then my mother.

bills... billsfan1104

You are judging her.  The kid deserved it.  Kudos to the mom, putting her foot down and making her kid learn.  He wont be calling his teacher a bitch again.  He thought he was billy bad ass, and now he is not.  Great job mom!!!!

nonmember avatar MCummings

In some other news stories about this, it mentioned that the father was in prison, she is a single mom and does not want her child to end up on the wrong road. Tough love, yes. But it looks like it was hitting home to me.

tinyp... tinypossum

I don't get this public shaming as discipline kick. It's not tough love, it's idiotic. It's only going to build anger and resentment and I'd bet $$ that this kid's misbehavior will only escalate. A better consequence would have been to write an apology to the teacher and then performed some sort of service for her to make up for the disrespectfulness. Shaming is revenge, not discipline. 

Melis... Melissa1508

Good job, mom!  Seriously, kids have NO respect for people now and it's because they aren't punished anymore.  Like one poster said, sending the kid on a 3 day vacation certainly isn't a punishment.  I can't imagine calling my teacher a bitch!  We respected our elders!  This up and coming generation is terrible and it's our fault.

nonmember avatar NoWay

I agree with "anonguest" ... after my mouth was washed out with soap, I don't think I would have been able to sit for a month. I would never even dream of disrespecting an adult.

amber... amberdotsmom

"While some kids can cope with the consequences others can't".

Exactly - and that's why this punishment is a GOOD thing.  If he were 18 and on his way to prison we wouldn't worry about whether he could cope with being locked up or not.  His reaction proves he's not the tough guy he thought he was when he chose to use the words he did to his teacher.  Once he learns that lesson (and it's better learned now) maybe he can consider how he wants to act and which way he wants his life to go from now own - be a decent person or make more bad decisions and end up like his father.

Caera Caera

I applaud the mother. The only punishments that matter are the ones that hurt, and a three-day vacation from school doesn't hurt. This little shit will probably think twice before mouthing off like a jackass again.

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