A couple months ago I mentioned a boy suspended from school for having a broken pencil sharpener and how ridiculous it seemed to punish him for that. But now, kids in Nottingham have been building weapons with pencil sharpener blades attached to pencils and rulers and showing them off at school.
Two weeks ago police were called to the same school and three 10-year-old boys reprimanded after they were found with the improvised knives.
Mr Turner-Rowe said: ‘I think it’s a bit of bravado. They hear about people out on the street with knives. A lot of it is peer pressure and not understanding the serious danger involved.
‘This is the only kind of thing that they are doing. There are no weapons’ factories. This one particular idea seems to be quite attractive to some children.’
The headteacher said that the three boys involved in the first incident two weeks ago were very secretive, removing the blades when they knew the teacher was not looking.
He said staff remained aware of the problem and were looking out for children with the improvised knives.
In a newsletter to parents, he said: ‘Any child who chooses to carry any kind of offensive weapon in school will be arrested.
‘Please take time to discuss the seriousness of knife crime with your children, and be assured we are on the alert to prevent this happening again.’
I think children should be encouraged to design and invent but they also should be taught to use their heads constructively while doing it. I get the lure of fads, though. Weird things get popular for no good reason. A cousin of mine (not the one who stabbed me with the pencil) had a pair of jeans he’d hung on a shed and then shot them several times with a BB gun or something. That was in the late ’80s and frankly, I’m almost surprised bullet fashion hasn’t reared its ugly well-ventilated head by now. Wouldn’t that look cool, like your clothes survived a drive-by-shooting? Take distressed denim to a whole new level, you know? Might even be safer for the environment than what they use now…