Insanity: Police called to Louisiana high school because of square-root symbol

Americans really are getting dumber.

Oberlin High School is a public school in Oberlin, Allen Parish, Louisiana, with an enrollment of 290 students, 50% of whom are “minorities” and 57% “economically disadvantaged”. The students are rated 54% and 75% in mathematics and English proficiency, respectively.

Scott Berson reports for the Miami Herald that on February 20, 2018, a discussion among students at Oberlin High School about the square-root mathematical symbol led to the police being called to investigate “terroristic threats”.

A student had been completing a math problem that required drawing the square-root sign. (The square root of a number X is a number Y, which, when multiplied by itself (Y x Y), equals the number X.)

Other students in the group commented that the symbol looked like a gun. Another student said something that, according to the sheriff’s office, could have sounded like a threat out of context.

So the school called the police, who searched one of the students’ home, where they found neither guns nor any evidence that the student had any access to guns. Nor did the police find any evidence that the student had any intent to commit harm.

The Sheriff’s Office concluded that “The student used extremely poor judgment in making the comment, but in light of the actual circumstances, there was clearly no evidence to support criminal charges.”

Nevertheless, the school board had been contacted to determine any disciplinary action for the student.

Lori Lemons is the principal of Oberlin High School:

Phone: (337) 639-4341
Fax: (337) 639-2508

H/t FOTM‘s Bongiornoc


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