Chesterfield student suspended for bringing vapor pen to school - NBC12.com - Richmond, VA News

Chesterfield student suspended for bringing vapor pen to school

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CHESTERFIELD, VA (WWBT) -

A Chesterfield father who called NBC 12 says his 12-year-old son, a 6th grade student at Midlothian Middle School, was suspended for bringing an Vapor Pen to school.

The pens are more commonly called electronic or e-cigarettes. A notice sent home with his son early last week reads that the child is suspended from school for two days for possession and use of an Evape at school and on a bus.

"Do I think it is right? No I don't. Did I make a mistake? Yes I did. But then when I read the rules of the school, and find out that they are the one that in writing, this thing is an electronic device punishable first offense by verbal reprimand at best," said the boy's father, who did not want to be identified.

While the use of Evape or Vapor pens is not directly spelled out in the Chesterfield school code of conduct, NBC12 Education Specialist Dr. Bill Bosher says disciplinary actions are enforced because of a student's intentions.

"In this case, it is something that looks like a cigarette. The intent is to substitute for a cigarette, but it is what the young person wanted to do with it, so it's not the behavior. It's the behavior in the context that usually provokes the discipline," Bosher said.

"We take very seriously our responsibility to provide a safe and supportive learning environment that is free from disruption," said Chesterfield Schools Spokesman Shawn Smith. "Students who violate student conduct regulations are subject to suspension and/or expulsion, and, if the offense is a violation of the law, to prosecution."

The boy's father says he wants the school system to either lighten its punishment in the future or change the rules for Vapor Pens.

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