PD*poll: Should dad be banned from son's graduation ceremony?

Filed under: In The News, Playground Bureau

A new state law is keeping thirty-six year old James Jones from his son's high school graduation ceremony and he's not happy. "I'm always preaching education to my children. How does that make me look if I'm not there at graduation?"

In August 2006, a Missouri law went into effect that prohibits sex offenders from school property unless they have the permission of the district superintendent. The only exceptions being government meetings or polling sites. Jones was convicted of raping a 15-year-old girl when he was 17 in 1990. He served five years in prison.

Rather than deal with individual requests, Buchanan County superintendents said they will ban all sex offenders from their schools. "If I start deciding which offenders can and cannot be at school, then I become the judge. And it is not my position to judge a case. The courts have already done that," said St. Joseph School District Superintendent Melody Smith. "My job is to provide the safekeeping of 11,632 students and the people who attend our events."

"I've already been punished for this. This isn't about me anymore. Now they're punishing my kids, and that's taking it a little too far," said Jones.

While it important to keep children safe, he does have a point. If James Jones has already served his time for the initial rape and there is no signs that he is a repeat offender, the graduating class of 2008 should be fine during the ceremony even if he is in attendance, sweating in the stands with all the other parents.

What do you think?

Should sex offender dad be banned from son's grad ceremony?
Yes! The law's the law, no matter how much time has passed.5226 (21.8%)
No. He's paid for his crime, and he should be there for his son.18737 (78.2%)

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AdviceMama Says:
Start by teaching him that it is safe to do so.