Girl's mother praises boy's kissing suspension

CANON CITY, Colo. (AP) — The mother of a girl involved in the case of a 6-year-old Colorado boy suspended for giving a classmate unwanted kisses says the school did the right thing.

The girl's mother, Jade Masters-Ownbey, told the Canon City Daily Record (http://bit.ly/1f7z0Vw ) on Wednesday that the school district did a "great job" protecting her daughter from repeated harassment from the boy.

First-grader Hunter Yelton was given a two-day suspension, with a sexual harassment infraction on his discipline record.

The boy's mother, Jennifer Saunders, insists the punishment was too harsh.

"He is 6 years old, and that is absolutely ridiculous for him to have 'sexual harassment' on his record, even it is (only on the district's) record," she said.

But Masters-Ownbey says the kissing was "not once, but over and over." She said she hoped people would not "start bashing the school that is doing a great job protecting my child from what is sexual harassment."

School officials insist the boy was repeatedly warned and that the punishment was warranted.

Lincoln Elementary School Principal Tammy DeWolfe said the school would "never suspend a student for one minor little violation."

No criminal charges have been brought against the boy.

Masters-Ownbey stated her daughter's older brother has felt like he needed to protect her at school.

"In elementary school, when a boy kisses a girl, the usual response of their peers is 'ewwww,'" she stated. "So why do the other kids rush to tell? Because they've seen it over and over, they've seen him repeatedly get in trouble for it, they've seen the girl repeatedly tell him to stop, they know it's wrong."