Student gets suspended for sharing photo she snapped of school’s dirty water

A Michigan high school student journalist was suspended from classes for three days — for being a student investigative journalist.

But her record is now being cleared up after real journalists looked into the matter.

Clip via WXYZ

When Hazel Juco noticed reddish-brown water coming out of the spigot in the girls’ restroom at John Glenn High School in Westland, Michigan, the senior snapped a photo and posted it to social media.

“I just took a picture of it,” Juco told the station. “And then in my newspaper class I talked about it with them.”

She posted the photo to Facebook and Twitter with the hope that someone might notice and do something about it.,

“I always hope that someone will see it and want to help us,” said Juco. “Because our school obviously doesn’t have money.”

And it soon attracted attention — but not the kind she was expecting.

“They told me I was being suspended, OSS (Out of School Suspension). It is inappropriate use of electronics in the restroom,” said Juco.

It turns out that there’s a rule that students not take photos from inside the restrooms — but it’s to make sure no inappropriate photos make it to social media — not for instances like Juco’s.

Nonetheless, such photos are commonplace at John Glenn High.

“Every girl takes selfies in the bathroom and makes it their profile pictures,” said Juco. “No one has gotten in trouble.”

When WXYZ addressed Juco’s case to school district Superintendent Dr. Michele Harmala, she not only lifted the suspension but also addressed the discolored water. It turned out it was a rusty pipe leading to the girls’ restroom.

“They sent a plumber out right away,” said Harmala.

And she said this of Juco’s suspension.

“The punishment is inappropriate,” Harmala told the station. “I am going to make sure the out of school suspension is expunged from the student’s record.”

And Juco learned that good investigative journalism can get good results.


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