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Wichita school district: Nine students disciplined in Heights Twitter case

  • The Wichita Eagle
  • Published Monday, May 13, 2013, at 7:01 p.m.
  • Updated Saturday, Oct. 19, 2013, at 7:33 a.m.

Wichita school district officials said Monday that nine Heights High School students “received consequences” related to a disruption officials said was caused by a student’s Twitter post earlier this month.

But only two – Wesley Teague and one other student – were suspended, officials said.

Teague, a senior at Heights High School, drew national attention last week after school officials suspended him for the remainder of his senior year, alleging that he “acted to incite a disturbance” with a tweet that angered some athletes and others.

Teague said the initial tweet and a few he posted in response to critics afterward were harmless and his punishment too severe. School officials said the messages created a disruption both online and at the school.

Statements released last week by the district said that “other students were … suspended” in addition to Teague. Officials had declined to say how many other students were suspended or for how long.

On Monday Bill Faflick, assistant superintendent for secondary schools, confirmed that two students had been suspended, said district spokeswoman Wendy Johnson. Seven other students “received consequences ranging from … phone being taken away to principal/administrative conference,” Johnson said in an e-mail.

On May 2, Teague posted on his personal Twitter page: “ ‘Heights U’ is equivalent to WSU’s football team.” Critics claimed it was a thinly veiled insult directed toward athletes who had coined the phrase and likened their endeavors and bravado to Wichita State University’s non-existent football program.

School officials said Teague’s tweet prompted “a negative reaction from many students, including threats of fights in the school … (and) caused a major disruption to the school day.”

Reach Suzanne Perez Tobias at 316-268-6567 or stobias@wichitaeagle.com. Follow her on Twitter: @SuzanneTobias.

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