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I was kind of a punk in high school and I was in a week-long suspension room for skipping a bunch of classes. The room monitor was this cool older dude with a long beard who talked a lot about life, philosophy, and things like that.

We weren't allowed to read or do anything but sit in boredom during suspension (school rules) but he made an exception for me if I wanted to read Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance (at his recommendation).

I bought a copy and brought it to suspension the next day, read the whole thing that week. Good memories thanks to the room monitor dude and an excellent book.

That totally sounds like a scene from Freaks and Geeks involving hippie guidance counselor Mr. Rosso.

This is such a strange punishment. Kid stupidly deprives himself of learning, so to discourage it, we deprive him of another week's worth?

Strange and prevalent (at least in the US). Every state I've lived in has some form of this, be it in-school or out-of-school suspension. It seems like a way to train kids for prison. It's mostly just a way to keep them from disrupting others; in other words, it's the easiest way to deal with the kid (with no thought toward helping them).

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