4-year-old expelled from preschool over Facebook post

A Florida boy was expelled from his preschool because of a Facebook post his mother posted on her personal page.

According to News 4 in Jacksonville, the mother, Ashley Habat, was upset the private Christian preschool did not give parents enough time to prepare for picture day. Ashley took her frustrations to Facebook posting, “Why is it that every single day there is something new I dislike about Will’s School? Are my standards really too high or are people working in the education field really just that ignorant.”

Ashley tagged the school – Sonshine Christian Academy – in her post and the next day she was told her 4-year-old son will could no longer attend the school.

According to the letter of dismissal, Habat’s “relationship with Sonshine did not get off to a very good start the first day of school. … You utilized social media to call into question not only the integrity but the intelligence of our staff. … These actions are also consistent with sowing discord, which is spoken of in the handbook you signed.”

News4Jax contacted the principal of Sonshine Christian Academy for a comment but have not yet received a response.

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39 comments

  • greg weindorf

    some people should not be parents or have access to the internet…not surprising it happened in the white trash armpit of america….florida….

  • Bernt

    A preschool that can’t take some critics? That’s unprofessional behavior on their part. The kid is better of in another place…. It’s a parents prerogative to have opinions about schools! If that happened to me I had sued the crap out of that school!

    • maggie

      Your first reaction is that you would sue??!! It is a private school……if she didn’t like how they do things then she should have talked to them….not rant on facebook. Showed how ignorant and immature the mom is, obviously not a good fit with the school and they knew it!

  • Ali

    “Why is it that every single day there is something new I dislike about Will’s School? Are my standards really too high or are people working in the education field really just that ignorant.”

    Question mark, not a period. Guess educators aren’t the most ignorant people in her post.

    • William

      Correction:

      “It should be a question mark instead of a period. I guess educators aren’t the most ignorant people in her life”. The educators aren’t in her post, which I must point out for you since you’re so concerned with others misusing the art of criticism with proper punctuation and the grammar that goes with it.

    • William

      It’s not crazy to think she was under the assumption she could “get away with” critiquing something on the internet without this sort of reaction. This gives the school far worse press than her isolated comment.

      What does this tell other parents who have children there or the interest in bringing their children there? If there’s a problem with a teacher or facility, it’s going to be productive to go in to talk to the administrators/teachers and dare bring up a problem (critiquing) them? This tells parents they could lose enrollment because a school that responds to a comment like that would also consider face to face confrontation “troublemaking”.

  • Mike H

    You can’t fix stupid and Ashley is definitely beyond repair. Perhaps Ashley should check out a class on social media at the local community college? While she is there, like maybe she should check out other classes on like some other subjects so she won’t sound like so stupid and stuff the next time she is interviewed for like a news story. Like you know what I mean? Like totally….

    • William

      I think the administrators should take your suggestion, not Ashley. This will light up on social media, whereas her comment would’ve fizzled in the night. They got the bad press they were so afraid of. If the school had nothing to worry about, they wouldn’t go after people’s personal comments on a social media site, which despite the trends, a school has no business being on, let alone spending resources scouting around for students’ family members tagging them.

      Why couldn’t such a prestigious school handle one of their members’ problems with dignity? How hard is it to address a problem? It would’ve been a class act (no pun…)

  • Dave S.

    There’s nothing wrong with what either of them did. She has the right to express her opinion. They have the right to remove her child from their school. Both have to live with the consequences of their actions.

      • William

        Run a school like a business all you like, the actual parents who want to pay more to send their kids to a school have more incentive to not send their children here than do have to send them here based on the news. This isn’t a restaurant or electronics superstore.

      • William

        They are in the business of working with children and the family of their children who have young minds there to be cultivated on a daily and yearly basis, unlike a business, where numbers are the goal and pushing product out of the showroom is the bottom line.

  • Garry

    Do many of us handle conflict in a mature way? Or do we just vent to our social media friends? Why didn’t the young woman talk directly to the school principal or leadership about her complaint? Why did the school leadership not talk directly to her about their upset for publicly tagging their school in her facebook? Was it charitable for the young woman to tag the school in a facebook response? Was it charitable for the school leadership to retaliate by expelling her son?. The school had the right to sever their relationship — it seems she did not follow the school handbook for handling disputes — but I wonder, “What Jesus would have done?”

    • William

      Reacting this way because “she tagged the school” sounds reactionary, deconstructive, militant, and against solving problems – all things you don’t want to see in a nourishing environment for children. This is good to know for those thinking about taking their kids there.

      If their establishment is that vulnerable to tolerate comments on social media, that speaks more in volume. That and the fact they are using their resources searching for all instances they are “tagged” by the people who pay to have their kids go there. This does not sound like an environment that cultivates problem solving, but memorization and doctrine, reward and punishment. This news story gives them the real press they were afraid of in the first place, so it’s a bad professional move to top it off — good for them.

  • Sean

    Not enough time to prepare for picture day? And she has to dump on the school for that? AND she is questioning the school staff’s intelligence?

  • Mrs. J

    I have been a preschool teacher for over 20 years and was outraged by the comment – we were simply talking about picture day. (I send out emails, post on the classroom door, and include a note on the child’s daily sheet and have still had parents forget about important date — today’s parents have so many different things to keep in mind!) With that said, however, she is entitled to feel that way. The real problem is she included the # for the school – in essence screaming her opinion to all the staff and families associated with program (something not permitted by the handbook, according to the story above).

    • William

      It doesn’t matter that you were “outraged”. Posting on a personal social media page, public or not, is no different than being overheard in the parking lot complaining about the same thing to another parent, or God forbid, the staff.

  • TMB

    Ridiculous. This is not the fault of the school. Not only was she given the information a week early in the child’s folder, but she ranted on Facebook about it and tagged the school STILL EXPECTING IT TO BE PRIVATE! It’s no longer PRIVATE if you tag the school. It’s no longer PRIVATE if you share it with friends because they can share it too. And from the way she described her son’s reaction when the teacher asked if he was excited about picture day, it sounds as if she was probably complaining to him about it before she dropped him off and ruined the day for him. Poor kid. Mom doesn’t care enough to keep up with what goes on with you at school and won’t take responsibility when she screws up. Hopefully he won’t follow her example and shirk his responsibilities when he grows up.

    • William

      It doesn’t MATTER whether it was public or private. She could’ve been having that conversation on school grounds with another parent; If the school responded the same way in that situation, the outrage would be reversed.

      Kicking someone out because they were overheard bitching about something mundane to vent, at worst, would not be stood for.

  • Kristen

    Huh? Freedom of speech only guarantees that government cannot censor speech – it does not guarantee that there will not be consequences for speech. Yes, a person has the freedom to say anything they wish, but they must also accept whatever is the result of what they said. This woman put down the staff and is now upset the staff doesn’t want to deal with her anymore. Would you, if someone publically criticized you and you had the choice?

  • William

    Most learning establishments would try to establish a sense of understanding in the situation, and work with parents of students — especially when it comes to private schools, which are USUALLY trying to cultivate problem solving in their environment, not just on a test paper.

  • William

    Just like any good company that stands by the product and service…. a respectable school could’ve handled it and also showed that they actually care when a parent/student is unhappy about something, even if they are in the wrong. If a place of learning can’t handle that, than it’s good that their actions spoke for them.

  • SuperTech-IT

    It’s the parent’s job to bring the situation to the school FIRST before venting to the entire internet. Had she voiced her complaints to the school directly, something could have been discussed. If the school is unaware that dialogue is required in the first place, then how can they fix the issue in a mutually beneficial manner ? No, like any other privately run business – if you keep going to a restaurant and then slamming them on facebook and tagging them on your posts – as soon as they find out, they have the right to stop serving you. Had you simply said “I can’t stand mayonnaise” they could have custom made your sandwiches so that (even though everyone else LOVES the mayo) you would love them too.

  • William

    If people want to make the “any press is good press, this is business argument”, take a look at how that has changed in the online world. Take Amazon and Yelp for example: The respectable businesses follow up with the bad reviews and express their (albeit canned) desire to make the situation better, even after they got their money. People respond to that.

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