Naples High student expelled for not paying 'Swear Jar'
NAPLES, Fla - A Naples High School teacher is under fire for having a swear jar in her classroom. A Naples father says his son was expelled for not putting money in after he said a bad word.
Naples High School teacher Karin Stewart is taking heat after a parent learned she was disciplining her students using a swear jar.
"Last Thursday I received a call from Naples Senior High School that my shot was the administrative off because he had said the word s---."
But Spears says his son was suspended and then expelled, not for swearing, but because he refused to pay up.
"The teacher demanded he either put money in the swear jar or he was going to suffer consequences," says Spears.
WINK News obtained an email sent by teacher Karin Stewart to the NHS principal explaining the swear jar. It says, "I would refer him to 'pay Petenia', the pink piggy bank used to collect a quarter each time one uses explicit language intentionally."
We looking into the Collier County School Board's bylaws and it states a teacher cannot accept compensation for a number of things, including forgiveness. "You're paying your way out of trouble," says Spears.
Some NHS students told WINK News they prefer the chance to pay the quarter, rather than getting written up. Some parents we spoke to said the idea doesn't bother them. "What's a quarter? People swear too much these days so it's a matter of respect and etiquette."
But, Spears says a swear jar has no place in public schools and no child should face consequences for refusing to pay up.
"We wouldn't be sitting on this bench having this conversation had my son taken his lunch money and put it in that swear jar," says Spears.
WINK News did speak to Stewart on the phone, but she said she is not allowed to comment. The school district did confirm in a written statement the piggy bank has been removed from her classroom.
As for where the money goes, according to Stewart's email she says it's used for a pizza party at the end of the year.