11-Year-Old Girl Suspended After Reporting Teacher For Bullying

You’d like to think that ultimately, good conquers evil. Sometimes you have to do something that’s not right in order to prove that something else wrong is happening, and you want to believe that your bad thing would then get overlooked. Unfortunately, that’s not always the way the world works, and sometimes you learn the hard way that the world isn’t fair.

Take, for example, Brianna Cooper, an 11-year-old girl from Florida who was suspended for five days after she recorded her teacher saying nasty things about another student in the class. Cooper had been witnessing the bullying for a while, but she knew that if she didn’t have proof, no one would believe her.

“You think that they would actually believe a student over a teacher,” Brianna said, explaining her rationale behind recording the situation.

She decided to use her cellphone to record what her teacher was saying and prove that she was being a bully. Brianna took the recording to another teacher, and not long after she was called to the principal’s office to let her know what she did was illegal. As it turns out, in Florida you cannot record a teacher without their consent.

Florida law states:

Florida makes it a crime to intercept or record a “wire, oral, or electronic communication” in Florida, unless all parties to the communication consent.

Florida law makes an exception for in-person communications when the parties do not have a reasonable expectation of privacy in the conversation, such as when they are engaged in conversation in a public place where they might reasonably be overheard.

“I thought I did the right thing,” Brianna said. “I never had anybody tell me I couldn’t record.”

The comments made by the teacher towards another student were appalling.

“Biggest kid in 5th grade and you’re acting like the smallest one” the teacher can be heard saying. “I wonder what your mom looks like. Don’t let the size fool you. I will drop you. You don’t know me. That’s all I’m telling you. So don’t give me no look.”

Brianna’s mom, Cassie Faulkner, was upset when she heard about not only the comments, but also her daughter’s suspension from school.

“You don’t speak to children, let alone your students like that,” Cassie said. “She thought she was doing a good thing. She’s 11 years old. She doesn’t know the law. You’re pretty much saying to students, ‘If you think anything is wrong, don’t try and do anything about it.'”

The school didn’t comment on the suspension of Brianna, but they did acknowledge the comments made by their teacher.

“The staff at Sam Gaines Academy investigated the incident involving unprofessional behavior by the teacher and took swift, appropriate action,” the school said. “The teacher was dismissed and no longer works for the school system.”

To me, this is a case of school’s protecting their teachers ahead of their students, which shouldn’t be the case. Despite the school firing that teacher, they still suspended a student for a full week just for reporting an unsafe environment. I understand there are laws, but should they not be ignored when the safety of children is involved?

[H/T: WPTV]

What do you think of this situation?

Cafeteria Worker Fired After Feeding Student With No Money

Stories like this always aggravate me, because they remind me that the school system is more concerned about money than the well-being of their students. Bonnie Kimball, who operated the cash register at Mascoma Valley Regional High School, was fired from her position at the school after she let a student take his lunch without paying because he didn’t have any money left in his lunch account.

Kimball loved her job at the school, where she got to talk to the school’s 326 students about life, their problems, and the general happenings of their day.  

“We didn’t even call it work,” Kimball said of working at the school. “We got up in the morning, we took care of our families and we went to take care of the kids.”

On March 28th, a student came in to the line with a tray of food, but Kimball noticed he didn’t have any money left in his account. Instead of having the student go hungry for the day, Kimball let him take the food with a promise to bring the money. Unfortunately, there happened to be a district manager for Cafe Services, the company who runs the school’s cafeteria.

“When I rang him up, the student didn’t have any money on their account,” Kimball said. “So, I have a district manager here, my boss has told me ‘Don’t cause any scenes with the contract’ and I quietly said ‘tell (your) mom you need money.’”

The next day, Kimball was called in to the manager’s office and was fired. The reasoning? They claimed that she had “stolen” the food from the company. She was escorted out of the building.

“It was my life for five years. I went and I took care of another family,” she said. “You don’t just lose a family member, be OK and move on.”

Two fellow co-workers were so upset with Kimball’s termination, they quit their jobs on the spot. Parents of some students have also voice displeasure with the way the school and cafe company handled the situation.

“These guys really took care of our kids. They put our kids first and their focus was really our kids,” said Christina Moodie, whose son attends the high school. I know Bonnie went above and beyond for the kids.”

Cafe Services hasn’t responded to requests for comment on the situation, but in their termination letter to Kimball, they made their point very clear.

“On March 28, a District manager was on-site and witnessed a student coming through the line with multiple food items that you did not charge him for,” said the letter, which Kimball shared with the Valley News. “This is a strict violation of our Cash Handling Procedures, the Schools Charge Policy and Federal Regulation governing free meals.”

Kimball is now out of work, and she’s concerned that this mark on her record could ultimately affect her job search in the future.

“I’m just dealing with so much right now: the public, paperwork. One minute I’m mad and the next minute, I just want to forget it all happened,” she said. “I guess I’m mourning my job.”

She says, however, that it’s not the school district’s fault, and that the officials from the board have been supportive and encouraging during this situation. Cookie Hebert, chairman of Mascoma Valley Regional School Board, wouldn’t comment directly on Kimball’s situation, but she did say that Kimball was just following the rules set out by the district.

“The policy is that the student be fed,” Hebert said. “There’s no refusal.”

After the story went viral, the company offered Kimball her job back, saying they would pay her for the work she missed.  

“We had a recent situation where an employee violated school and company policy in dealing with our food service and our district manager made a decision he felt was right at the time,” said Brian Stone, president of the company’s school division.

Amanda Isabelle, the district superintendent, also said the school would hire Kimball back.

“The events of these past few weeks and the feedback I have received from parents has given me considerable pause,” Isabelle said in the statement. “As a school district, we understand the importance of rules and procedures, but upon reflection, I have become sufficiently convinced that it is wrong of us to assume that all the responsibility falls to the vendor, and I do not believe our communities would accept that explanation of this situation. We must be accountable for the people who work in our schools.”

Despite the offer, the former lunch lady won’t be returning.

“They’re not doing it for me, they are doing it to save face,” Kimball noted.

Personally, I think it’s ridiculous for a company to fire Kimball because she was allowing a student to eat, especially because the parent did pay the $8 for the food. Sometimes, politics need to be put aside and the well-being of our kids needs to be the focus.

What do you think of this situation?

Man Charged $6,200 For One-Night Hotel Room Stay Thanks To “Small Print”

Last month, I used one of those popular online travel services to book a hotel for a weekend getaway. I was a little skeptical about booking online, but I was lucky that everything worked out – and I got a good deal! Unfortunately for Justin Smerchanski, things didn’t go as planned…and it cost him $6,200.

Smerchanski was traveling for work from Manitoba, Canada to Willmar, Minnesota, and used the booking site Expedia.ca to book his hotel room. He was in a bit of a rush, and booked a room at the Holiday Inn & Suites, which was listed at $207 for the night. It was a next-night reservation, so the price was a little higher, which Smerchanski anticipated. What he didn’t anticipate was the literal thousands of dollars in fees and taxes that were about to come his way.

Smerchanski printed his receipt, then saw there were $3,143.93 in “taxes and fees” and an additional $2,828.66 in “property fees.” His credit card was billed for $6,180.54.

“Obviously I thought it was a mistake, and right away I called Expedia,” Smerchanski said. “I ended up talking with them, trying to make my way up to someone who could tell me exactly what was wrong. I was kind of assured right away that this was obviously a mistake and they were going to have it cleared up.”

That didn’t happen, though. Instead, the Canadian man was tossed from department to department and given the runaround for days by the travel site.

“It just didn’t seem like they thought anything was wrong,” he said. “I go like, ‘Hey hold on a second here. Don’t you think something is off? This is a $6,200-a-night room in Willmar, Minn. This is out of this world.”

Smerchanski was getting frustrated. After talking to at least 12 different people, he’s starting to wonder if the issue will ever be solved.

“No one can give me a clear answer,” he said. “I basically just kept getting the same runaround, that they weren’t able to authorize a credit for that amount [for a refund]. I kept saying, ‘Why am I talking to them? Get me up to someone that can.’ It’s just one hold after another and one manager after another who can’t help you with anything. I’m starting to get the indication that they aren’t going to be clearing it up.”

Instead of trying to deal with Expedia, Smerchanski shifted his efforts to the credit card company. They’ve been trying to get in touch with the travel company on his behalf in order to get answers and a refund.

“I was told from the credit card company that they’ve never ever seen anything like this,” Smerchanski said.

Though they were silent about the controversy at first, Expedia did release a statement on Smerchanski’s case. They provided a full refund for his charge, as well as a $200 voucher.

“Our team has reviewed this case, and we have gone ahead and processed a refund for this customer in full. We are very sorry this issue occurred, and deeply regret this experience,” Expedia spokesperson Mary Zajac wrote in an email to CBC News. “In this particular instance, we do feel we could have resolved this issue in a quicker manner.”

Holiday Inn had some advice for customers who are looking to book hotel stays in the future.

“We encourage guests to book directly through our channels for greater control over their reservations,” wrote a spokesperson from InterContinental Hotels Group, which owns the Holiday Inn brand.

Smerchanski also has some advice for future travellers.

“It’s just insane,” he said. “Just to basically be given the runaround multiple times, without knowing for sure the answer, is very frustrating. Don’t be in a rush and make sure you read all the small print.”

In the end, Smerchanski didn’t even stay at the hotel room he booked because he was so upset about the charges. He made alternate accommodations.

“It was a Best Western. It was $155.”

[H/T: CBC News]

Have you ever had a bad experience with travel sites?

Jenelle Evans Considering Divorce After Husband Shoots And Kills Her Dog

Jenelle Evans Considering Divorce After Husband Shoots And Kills Her Dog

Jenelle Evans is in the headlines again, but this time, you can’t help but feel sorry for her. Usually Evans and her husband, David Eason, are in the news because of crazy antics or petty fights, but after this latest incident, it’s clear that something is seriously wrong with Eason, and Evans might actually be calling it for good.

Earlier this week, Eason shot and killed Evans’ French bulldog, Nugget, after the dog had nipped at their daughter Ensley’s face. Eason promptly took the dog out to the yard, repeatedly slammed him against the deck, then took the dog to the yard and shot it. Eason then posted picture of Ensley on his Instagram, defending his actions.

I dont give a damn what animal bites my baby on the face… whether it be your dog or mine, a dog is a dog and I dont put up with that shit at all.

I’m all about protecting my family, it is my lifes mission. Some people are worth killing or dying for and my family means that much to me. You can hate me all you want but this isnt the first time the dog bit Ensley aggressively. The only person that can judge weather or not a animal is a danger to MY CHILD is ME.

Evans was not on the same page as her husband, saying:

Nugget… I’m crying everyday. I love you so much and I’m so sorry. I’m speechless,” she captioned a photo with the pet.

You were my side kick and knew the moment I felt bad and would cuddle with me.

You still had a lot to learn and a lot to grow from your lessons. Everyday I wake up you’re not here, when I come home you’re not here, when I go to bed… you’re not here.

You’re gone forever and there’s no coming back. #Heartbroken #Distraught.

Evans also wrote about the incident on Twitter immediately after it happened.

“Everyone just please leave me be right now, I don’t need anymore f*****g drama!” she said. “I didn’t “run away from home”. Haven’t been home all day and been busy taking care of my kids and myself. Had no idea any visitors came by my house… still don’t know what happened at my house. Please stop making up rumors. I haven’t spoken to any media and still not. Bye. Until I speak about a situation don’t assume a damn thing about me.”

Evans did eventually talk to the media, making a statement to Us Weekly.

“David killed my dog Nugget because he snapped at my 2-year-old, Ensley,” she told them. “He doesn’t put up with that and those are his beliefs. He just took her and shot her in the woods … about two acres away from the house.”

She continued on to say that she is “shocked and upset” over what went down, and that Ensley and Kaiser, her son who she shares with Nathan Griffith, “were inside and just got done playing” when Eason killed the dog. Eason’s daughter, Maryssa, who he shares with his ex-wife, “immediately went to her bedroom and didn’t come out all night until the next day.” Evans’ other son, Jace, was on a cruise with his grandmother at the time.

“David and I are not on talking terms,” she continued.I’m too hurt and upset at the fact he did that. It’s taking time to get over this whole situation, and it’s making me feel he’s very cruel and doesn’t have a heart on many ends. [I] would like for everyone to just give me my own time right now to figure things out and clear my head.”

“At this time, we are dealing with this rough situation. I want to focus on what’s best for me and my kids,” Evans said. “(Divorce is) in thoughts, but nothing is finalized.”

Evans and Eason may also be facing animal cruelty charges, as now the Columbus County Sheriff’s Office is getting involved. They told TMZ they have “initiated a joint investigation into allegations of animal cruelty [with the Columbus County Animal Control]. The investigation is ongoing.”

According to TMZ, aw enforcement received 138 complaints after news of the shooting broke, and they were sent to animal control. Animal control visited Eason and Evans’ home and were able to get through an open gate, but were met with “no trespassing” signs and a grey pit bull on the porch. They felt it was unsafe to complete the visit. The Sheriff’s department was sent instead.

Despite these reports, Evans is denying that anyone showed up at her house.

“TMZ ARE LIARS!!!” she wrote on Instagram. “I HAVE THE RING APP AND CAN SHUT THEM DOWN QUICK. NO ONE CAME BY MY HOUSE YESTERDAY AT ALL. IF ANYTHING I SPOKE TO THE CHIEF SO ASK HIM WHAT I SAID. They are also saying that my dog dying is a publicity stunt…are you f*****g kidding me?”

“I AM NOT AFRAID TO DEATH OF ANYONE OR ANYTHING RIGHT NOW…” she continued. “I’M HEARTBROKEN. STOP WRITING LIES ABOUT ME. YES MARRIAGE IS UP IN THE AIR AT THIS POINT. I HAVE ONLY BEEN AWAY FROM HOME BECAUSE I’M STILL HURT AND UPSET. PLEASE PLEASE STOP.”

Eason was at a North Carolina courtroom today to pay $5,187 he owed in back child support for his son, and while he was there he was confronted by a photographer from WSFX. The photographer tried asking Eason about the dog, to which he responded “Don’t get in my face, bro. I promise you don’t want to do that.”

Since everything has blown up, Eason has deleted the initial video of Nugget nipping Ensley. Evans posted a picture of her and Ensley on Instagram, and has also been sharing multiple articles about her comments to Us Weekly about getting a divorce.

I know it’s easy to harp on the young woman for mistakes she’s made in the past, but I think this time she has really been a victim. I hope she sees how cruel Eason is and finally works up the courage to leave him.

What do you think about this situation?

Woman Told To “Cover Up” At Pool After One-Piece Deemed “Inappropriate”

A woman in Tennessee was left embarrassed after she was told to leave her apartment building’s pool due to her “inappropriate” swimsuit…which was a one-piece. Tori Jenkins was at the pool in a pink swimsuit when she was approached by two leasing consultants who told her what she was wearing wasn’t appropriate.

Tyler Newman, Jenkins’ then-fiancee, wrote about the ordeal on Facebook.

“Today, my fiancé was faced with either changing her bathing suit, covering up with shorts or leaving the pool that we paid a $300 fee to maintain,” he wrote. “Tori was accused of wearing a ‘thong bathing suit’ and told there were complaints about the way she was dressed. She was told by the leasing consultant that her body, because it’s built more curvy than others, is ‘too inappropriate’ for children to be around.”

Tori spoke with Buzzfeed News as well, saying one of the consultants told her that she “wasn’t right” to be in public like that.

“She tried to convince me a few times to let her take pictures of my butt to show how ‘inappropriate’ it was,” Tori said. “[She] told me that if I didn’t have kids I wouldn’t understand how it wasn’t right to be out in public in that, and that she wouldn’t want her own kids around me.”

According to Tori, the consultant also told Tori that her outfit would “excite” too many teenage boys who live in the complex, which Tori said was “really violating and degrading.”

“I was point-blank told that my comfortability at a pool that I paid to use was less important than a teenage boy being able to control himself,” she told BuzzFeed News. “It perpetuates the idea that how a man feels around a woman is more important than how a woman feels around herself.”

Thinking she would be met with support after sharing her story, Tori was wrong. Unfortunately, she received many negative comments about the way she looked, the suit she was wearing, and her choice to show up to the pool in that suit. She took the chance to clarify a lot of the things she was hearing about herself in a Facebook post.

I’d just like to say on my own behalf that I’m really amazed by all of the overwhelming support I’ve received. Thank you all, you really don’t know how much it means to me. It hasn’t even been that long since it happened but I can tell you that I’ve felt really shitty about myself since.

Being distracted by friends and work and your wonderful comments have made this process a whole lot easier. But I just can’t help but read all of the negative stuff as well and there’s a few things I’d like to clear up as well

1. I’m a size medium. The swimsuit is a size medium. I tried on the large in the store and felt little confidence that my boobs wouldn’t show after being hit with one good splash.

2. The pool rules state only that “Duly appropriate attire must be worn at all times, no cut offs”

3. The suit may look small but that’s also after I binge cried and ate pizza. When you feel that shitty about yourself do you really think the first pose that comes to mind is happy? That I wanna have good posture and look skinny? I didn’t care. And frankly I still don’t care if I looked “too big” for the suit. Look at the body language: my shoulders are down, arms crossed, and so on. There’s only a “pinch an inch” situation on one side, because I’m slouching.

4. There WAS a front facing picture. I took it down after reading so many hateful comments about my stomach and so many intensely explicit sexual comments. That is the whole issue. I will not be reposting it because that isn’t the area of my body in question. I left the back view up even after the same comments are made on that picture.

5. The ENTIRE POINT of this post is that no man or woman has the right to make me feel uncomfortable in my own skin. No right to police me or any other human.

I hope this clears things up for some of you. I may add to this post as time goes on but for now I’m tired, and frankly a bit beaten down. Those of you who know me know I don’t react to things much but this situation has really gotten to me.

Again, thank you so much to my fiancé, family, friends, and all of the people who were kind enough to share supportive words with me. I’m sorry if I don’t reply to everyone but I’m trying to stay off of my phone more.

The story went incredibly viral, prompting the apartment complex to release their own statement on the issue.

Smoky Crossing is a welcoming family community. Multiple residents within our community complained and expressed concerns regarding Ms. Jenkins’ swimwear.

In accordance with our pool policies, which are posted near the swimming area, one of our leasing consultants requested Ms. Jenkins wrap a towel around herself when she was walking around the pool.

Ms. Jenkins was never asked to leave the pool. In addition, our leasing agent did not state that Ms. Jenkins swimwear would ‘excite teenage boys.’  Ms. Jenkins and Mr. Newman are valued members of our community.

However, we feel it is inappropriate to equate requesting Ms. Jenkins to cover up with sexual harassment or ‘rape culture.’ Smoky Crossing denounces harassment in all forms.

Both Tori and Tyler denied the complex’s comment that no one mentioned teenage boys when speaking to Tori.

After Tori wrote her post clarifying the situation, she received an outpouring of support.

“Those people are wrong for doing that to you tori,” Jesse Riddle wrote.

“Nothing wrong with your suit,” Jen Bois said. “Most bathing suits don’t fit everyone perfectly. Even though I wear a small I still end up showing the same amount you do because bathing suits are made that way. Everybody’s suit rides up.”

“You are so beautiful there nothing wrong with your outfit you going to the pool not the store keep your chin up people going to talk they don’t have anything to do,” Ruth Anne Perry encouraged.

At the time, Tori and Tyler said they were “exploring other options” for living arrangements, as they didn’t feel comfortable living in a complex which held those values.

What do you think of this whole situation?

Vanessa Hudgens Slammed After Controversial Instagram Post

Since her debut in High School Musical, Vanessa Hudgens has had a huge fan following. The actress and singer loves to document her life on social media, including her fitness regime. In an interview with People, Hudgens admitted she dabbles in intermittent fasting.

“I’ve been intermittent fasting a lot, because for me, I love pasta, I love pizza, and when I’m not eating carbs I feel like a little piece of me dies,” she told People. “Intermittent fasting is great, because when I am fasting—those first two weeks are definitely rough, I’m not going to lie, but after that I feel more grounded and powerful in my workouts. I get the nutrients that I need when I eat, but then I also eat what I want.”

When she’s not intermittent fasting, though, she revealed that she follows the sometimes controversial keto diet, which involves eating a lot of healthy fats and very few carbs.

“If you have the right ingredients to keep you on track, I think it’s amazing,” she said. “I’m always making sure I’m getting those healthy fats in, so I eat a LOT of almond butter. You feel really energetic and supported on the keto diet.”

Hudgens did admit, though, that the keto diet isn’t really for everyone.

“I feel like it’s a recipe that works for me,” she said. “Everyone’s different of course, but for me, that’s what’s been the most beneficial so far.”

Recently, Hudgens posted an ad for the new Slim Fast Keto Fat Bombs, which are a low carb, high fat snack.

“#ad Finally the perfect Keto snack!!” Vanessa wrote. “@SlimFast #SlimFastKeto Peanut Butter Cup Fat Bombs are creamy peanut butter and chocolatey goodness… without all the sugar and carbs. And I loooovvvve that I can take it with me on-the-go!”

Celebrities have been known to promote weight loss products on their social media pages, but for some reason, Hudgens’ fans were totally against her promoting something to do with the keto diet.

“Please stop advertising unhealthy methods to lose weigh,” one fan wrote.

“Another one bites the dust- please don’t promote diet culture!” someone else said. “Women don’t have to lose weight to have worth, no matter how much a corporation pays you to act otherwise.

“You talk so much about being fit and working out and then you promote unhealthy and not effective methods to lose weight 😔 this ain’t it,” one fan said.

“You have many young, impressionable followers that will follow your advice,” another fan cautioned. “Be responsible!Young girls WILL try this diet if you promote it, what amount of money could possibly make that worth it for you?”

It’s worth noting that Hudgens never encouraged people in her post to go on the keto diet. All she said was that she found a snack that works for her, and while yes, she’s getting paid to post it, it’s not like she told people they need to diet. This is what works for her. If it doesn’t work for you, then don’t do it.

I think all the backlash she’s getting for this one Instagram post is ridiculous, but everyone is entitled to their own opinion.

What do you think about the reaction to Hudgens’ post?