Concerned citizens poured outside the Board of Education office onto the sidewalk, all waiting to attend a meeting where some say they were eager to express concerns about the Cairo High School alcohol incident.
John Mason, a concerned citizen, says, "I want to make sure justice and fairness is done here. I'm against any suspension or expulsion over a matter like this."
Michelle Fallin adds, "In my opinion, the meeting was ended abruptly. There were still parents with concerns and issues they felt need to be addressed. The board didn't give us the opportunity."
Apparently there was a misunderstanding. Board members say this meeting was called for the board to determine the fate of the students currently on suspension for being kicked out of a hotel on a school function after drinking alcohol and getting rowdy.
Tom Lehman, the ttorney for the Grady County Board of Education, says, "In lieu of the three-person tribunal that traditionally hears student discipline matters, a hearing officer will be selected."
The officer will hear the evidence and make a recommendation to the board as to the appropriate punishment.
Michelle says, "I'm happy they'll have the independent hearing so that hopefully these children will have a chance to continue with their education."
Fallin, like many others, says she agrees with punishing the students for their mistakes, but she says depriving them of a diploma is not the answer.