Northwest Student Expelled After School Prank

By: Liam Martin Email
By: Liam Martin Email

RIVES JUNCTION: "It kind of stinks. I wish I could've just gone back to school."

16-year-old Kayley Vinton made a costly mistake.

"I'm sorry for what I did," she tells News 10 Thursday. "I wish I could've taken it back, because I regret it."

On Dec. 2, 2010, Kayley's teacher at Northwest High School in Jackson was walking by her desk when the 10th grader stuck her in the backside with a dissecting pin.

"Because a friend dared me to," she explains. "But I'm angry with myself, because I did it."

Kayley was suspended immediately, and this week the school board elected to expell her for 180 days -- a decision her father says seems extreme.

"She made a mistake, but she didn't mean to hurt the teacher," says Paul Vinton. "It was a prank."

But officials with Northwest say the state's zero-tolerance law, which states that any student who assaults a teacher must be expelled for a minimum of 180 days, is clear. They had little choice but to expel Kayley.

"That is technically an assault," Superintendent Tim Hall says. "The state requires that we bring such a situation to the school board. And the state then says that the school board shall expel that student."

But Hall says the district is not giving up on Kayley. School officials are trying to enroll her in an after-school program so she doesn't fall behind in her credits.

"Certainly, we wanna do everything we can to make sure this student is getting an education," Hall says.

As for Kayley she says she'll never make the same mistake again. She already appeared in court to answer assault charges filed by her teacher and was forced to pay a fine and attend 90 hours of therapy. is happy to provide a forum for commenting and discussion. Please respect and abide by the house rules:

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