Three female UMass Amherst honor students have been kicked out of school because they were seen in a photo without masks when they were off-campus and outside. The freshmen students will reportedly lose their course credits and tuition over the maskless photo that was posted on social media. The students posed for the photo while at an off-campus party. The photo, posted to Instagram, was then reportedly sent to UMass Amherst officials, who subsequently suspended the three students.
A mother of one of the students said, "There was a photo sent to the administration of these girls outside off-campus on a Saturday.” The father of another suspended student said his daughter "did everything right," adding, "She was valedictorian and class president of her high school."
According to WCBV-TV, the students were promptly forced to move out of on-campus housing and made to return home to attend remote classes while they appealed their case. The parents said the three students lost their appeals.
The students were then kicked out of their distance-learning courses and were prohibited from taking their finals, actions which have major academic and financial ramifications for the families. The students were forced to forfeit the entire semester and $16,000 tuition that was already paid. The parents said the school would not refund the tuition.
One of the parents (who don’t wish to give their last names for fear that it could hurt their daughters’chances of getting accepted to a new school), noted, "These beautiful young ladies who are honors students have had a full academic year stripped away and their paths broken of their higher education for alleged COVID violations.”
Another parent, who termed the situation “heartbreaking,” said, "One little thing happens and you're out? Like not even like a don't do it again, here's some probation.”
UMass Amherst issued a general statement behooving a closed totalitarian society: "Students received a number of public health messages this semester that emphasized the importance of following public health protocols and the consequences for not complying, and those messages were also shared on UMass social media channels. Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, the public health and safety of the UMass Amherst community has been the university's foremost priority. Expectations regarding students' responsibility to follow public health protocols, and the consequences for failing to do so, were clearly communicated to students before and throughout the spring semester, and students were updated regularly as conditions changed. When positive COVID-19 cases surged within the UMass community in February 2021, the university, in consultation with the state Department of Public Health, promptly imposed severe restrictions on campus activities, including the suspension of in-person classes and a prohibition on student social gatherings. It was made clear to students that those who failed to comply would be subject to discipline, including suspension. A February 7 campus-wide message directed all students, whether residing in campus residence halls or in off-campus housing in the surrounding area, to stay home, except to get meals, undergo twice-weekly COVID testing, or to attend medical appointments.”
The families have hired a lawyer and plan to file a lawsuit against the university.
This is sick…and terrifying. Taxpayer-funded and tuition funded “bastions of higher learning” have to be put in their place…and soon. No school has the right to tell any student what he, she or “they” can or can’t do while off campus. For that matter, no government entity can arbitrarily strip any citizens Constitutional rights from them. And no group, educational body, bureaucracy…or government… can repeal the natural rights granted to each of us equally by our Creator.
Colleges and universities cheer on their students when they are looting and burning during BLM/Antifa riots but kick them out of school if they refuse to cover their mouths when off campus. No one should put up with this. It is brainless, soulless, heartless, ball-less.
Or, as The Kinks once noted, “Girls will be boys and boys will be girls, it’s a mixed up, muddled up, shook up world…”