Teacher Gets Fired for Letting Students Drink -- Even Though Parents Okayed It

wine glassesAll right parents, tough question time. Who do you think should get to decide whether your kids are allowed to drink alcohol? Is it you or their school?

Think long and hard on that one. Because a Manhattan high school seems to think they have the final say. And a judge agrees with them!


The Calhoun School fired a French teacher who served wine to several teenagers on a trip to France -- even though she'd gotten written permission from each of the girls' parents. But when Daniele Benatouil took her case to court, a judge ruled that the school was within its rights to can her behind because the school prohibits booze on school trips. 

Now listen, we all know schools make these policies so they can punish kids who get bombed on their senior trip. But we're not talking about something like that. What we're talking about is a trip to France, where at 18 the girls could all legally drink, and where they were having a few sips of wine.

As a mother, I'm willing to give a school a certain amount of control over my kid inside the building. But I'd liken this to the way the federal government's rules supplant those of the states. I'm the federal government. The school is the state. What I say goes.

If I think it's OK for my kid to drink, she can drink. And there's no way I'm handing a decision that big over to a school district -- whether we're talking a school trip or schools trying to discipline kids over something they've seen on Facebook! I'm still the parent!

What do you think? Should schools have the right to tell kids they can't drink or is that up to the parents?


Image via rhett maxwell/Flickr

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