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Ohio Student Allowed to Return to School After Hitting Principal with a Pie

Ohanian Comment: The school approved a fund-raiser which allowed the winning student to toss a pie tin filled with whipped cream into the face of his favorite (or least favorite) teacher or principal. Read what happened to the winner.

MARBLEHEAD, Ohio - A Danbury High School student who was expelled after throwing a pie in the face of his principal as part of a school-sanctioned fund-raiser will be allowed to return to class this fall, the district superintendent announced last night.

During a school board meeting, Superintendent Martin Fanning read a statement reducing the 80-day expulsion he ordered for sophomore Blake Molnar, 15, after the incident involving high school principal Karen Abbott.

"A high school student who was expelled for inappropriate conduct at an April 30, 2004, charity event has acknowledged that his actions were inappropriate and . . . that he has provided the high school principal with a written apology regarding his actions," Mr. Fanning said in his statement.

"In light of the student's acknowledgement and apology I have modified the student's expulsion such that he will be permitted to return to school at the beginning of next school year."

The boy won a contest allowing him to throw an aluminum tin filled with whipped cream into Ms. Abbott's face at the end of an assembly in the school gymnasium.

Flyers posted around the school for the "pie in the face contest" urged students to pay 50 cents to enter a drawing for the right to "pie your favorite (or least favorite) teacher or principal in the face."

Proceeds were to support the Ottawa County school's Relay For Life teams, which were raising money for the American Cancer Society.

After the meeting last night, Mr. Fanning said special events in the district "will probably be scrutinized a little bit more."

Danbury Township police were called to the school after the boy shoved the pie into the principal's face.

Ms. Abbott told police that her face, neck, and nose hurt because of the incident, and she asked that the student be charged with assault.

At the time, Mr. Fanning and other adult witnesses told police they thought the student used too much force.

The case was forwarded to the Ottawa County prosecutor's office, which has not charged the boy.

Ms. Abbott declined to comment on the matter last night, referring questions to Mr. Fanning.

The superintendent said the student's return to classes this fall was part of an agreement between the Molnar family and the district.

The boy was barred from attending school from the day of the incident until the end of the school year more than a month later.

Asked how that would affect his grades for the second semester, Mr. Fanning replied, "I'd say you'd probably have to ask the parents that."

The boy's parents, Don and Tina Molnar, did not attend last night's meeting and could not be reached by phone afterward.

Linda Tucker Moyer, a Sandusky attorney representing the family, said she could not discuss the agreement in detail.

"I think it's in the best interests of everyone," she said. "I can only tell you he will be back in school."

In an interview last month, Mr. Molnar defended his son as a "good kid" with a first semester grade point average of 3.43. He also said school officials had overreacted.

"This thing is just totally wrong," he said at the time.

Toledo Blade





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