December 16th, 2011
07:08 PM ET

'Tebowing' high school students suspended for blocking hallway

Two "Tebowing" high school students have been suspended for blocking the hallway while mimicking the quarterback's famous prayer pose.

The boys were two of four students to trigger a wave of some 40 students kneeling in between classes, Riverhead High School Principal David Wicks said. The students caused a safety hazard, he said. The incident was captured on a smartphone and posted to YouTube.

"It was basically just a tribute to Tim Tebow," The New York Post quoted one of the boys as saying. "It was more than a religious thing. There was some of that involved obviously, because he prays. I guess it was basically like a moment of silence."

The two students received in-school suspension because they had been warned before about pulling disruptive stunts in the middle of the hallway, Wick said. The others received a verbal warning.

"This is about students causing an unsafe situation by blocking the hallways," Wicks said. "This has nothing to do with Tim Tebow or punishing the students for their religion beliefs. If they'd been sitting in the hallway with their legs crossed they'd receive the same discipline."

Tebow mania is sweeping the nation, inspired by the Denver Broncos quarterback's overt religiosity and knack for winning despite less than stellar stats.

"I think it’s wonderful that our students look up to sports heroes such as Mr. Tebow, but we can’t allow students to create unsafe situations in school," Superintendent Nancy Carney said in a statement.

"The students stated that there was nothing religious about their actions and that they were just having fun. We hope that these students and all of our students continue to look up to the positive role models in public life; we just encourage them to do it in a responsible way."

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Filed under: Football • Pro football • Sports • Tim Tebow
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  1. SPLAT!~

    Nothing more than a bunch of class clowns looking for attention and they got it. According to the article it wasn't the first instance for two of them to perpetrate disruptive behavior. Grow up boys, stupidity should be painful!~

    December 16, 2011 at 2:58 pm | Report abuse |
  2. dave

    1. the school needs wider hallways. 4 kids can block the hallway?
    2. suspended for blocking the hallway? seriously? is the school hallway some sort of high traffic speedway? would students get suspended for doing an impromptu dance in the hallway?
    3. the kids need to pick a better spot for doing their "performance", try the auditorium or football field

    December 16, 2011 at 2:58 pm | Report abuse |
    • QS

      It was in-school suspension, and only 2 got it because they had previously been warned.

      And that's completely fair regardless of what you think of the size of the hallway, kids aren't supposed to be sitting or loitering in the hallway anway.

      December 16, 2011 at 3:04 pm | Report abuse |
    • Please

      Yeah, they should totally spend thousands of dollars they don't have to tear down all the halls in the school and make the hallways wider and reduce adjacent class room size, because that's what's REALLY important in school... wide hallways.

      December 16, 2011 at 3:07 pm | Report abuse |
    • Chloeswift

      "kids aren't supposed to be sitting or loitering in the hallway anway."

      And I am not supposed to be using company time to be posting replies!

      And our elected leaders are supposed to represent us.

      It's all so wrong......... everything is wrong. Whatever are we to do now?

      December 16, 2011 at 3:08 pm | Report abuse |
    • LuizC

      So next time a kid kneels to tie his shoe he should be suspended

      December 16, 2011 at 3:14 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jake

      1. It was a group of forty students; the four who were disciplined were the ones who started it, and the rest took their lead.

      2. Well, you didn't notice it was forty students, so I probably don't have to tell you that forty students can completely block a school hallway. It stops other students from getting where they're going on time, and can be a safety hazard if there's a sudden need to evacuate. An impromptu dance routine of similar size, spurred on by students already warned about that very thing, would probably also be a problem, yes.

      3. Obviously.

      What I'm wondering is (4), why is this news, much less a featured story on the CNN front page? Nobody seems to think it's anything special except the reporter, who I guess was really hoping somebody involved would consider this a freedom-of-religion issue. It's usually faster just to tell the editor there's no story here, ha ha.

      December 16, 2011 at 3:17 pm | Report abuse |
    • A Mom

      Watch the video, it was 4 students leading a group of 40. That's enough to block the hallway in most schools and create a safety hazard. They were doing it without warning between classes, someone could have been hurt.

      Two of the 4 received in school suspension because they had been warned about pulling disruptive stunts in the hallway. That leads me to believe they had a history of attention seeking stunts.

      I think the school made the right call.

      December 16, 2011 at 3:17 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Joxer the Mighty

    I consider myself a Christian and I think the school was in the right. It's the same principle as the OWS crowd getting arrested for blocking streets and bridges. Your free to do what you want, but not when it affects the safety of others.

    December 16, 2011 at 2:59 pm | Report abuse |
  4. If horses had Gods ...

    This was attention seeking & disruptive behavior only ... there is no religious sincerity in mimicking a pro-athlete's "stance" while blocking a hallway to gain attention.

    December 16, 2011 at 3:00 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Chloeswift

    I wonder........ do you think this might be the start of a decent role model for kids. How long has it been that there has been a hero that wasn't a thief, sleaze, druggie or worse for kids to look up model after? We have no real heros these days. Can you name one?

    December 16, 2011 at 3:02 pm | Report abuse |
    • QS

      While I'm not a Tebow fan in the least, I do agree he is a better role model than some athletes.....but hero? That's a big stretch!

      December 16, 2011 at 3:05 pm | Report abuse |
    • dean

      Yeah! His name is Dad!

      December 16, 2011 at 3:08 pm | Report abuse |
    • Josh

      I can name more than one. What type of environment do you live in where your only "hero" options are thieves, sleazes and drug addicts?

      And Tebow is not, and never will be, someone I will look up to.

      December 16, 2011 at 3:08 pm | Report abuse |
    • mike

      aquaman

      December 16, 2011 at 3:09 pm | Report abuse |
    • Chloeswift

      It is a huge stretch....... but what else have we got?

      December 16, 2011 at 3:09 pm | Report abuse |
    • Chloeswift

      "What type of environment do you live in where your only "hero" options are thieves, sleazes and drug addicts?"

      I live in TV land ..... the same place our kids and the rest of live.

      December 16, 2011 at 3:11 pm | Report abuse |
    • Chloeswift

      You're right. I forgot Dad and Aquaman. I stand corrected.

      December 16, 2011 at 3:13 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Rich

    You can't cure stupid, but you sure as hell can suspend it. These d-bags got what they asked for, attention and suspension!

    December 16, 2011 at 3:03 pm | Report abuse |
  7. JOH

    So these kids don't know a thing about football or how a quarterback should play? I guess this Tebow bandwagon spreads like a plague to the ignorance of the mass populace.

    December 16, 2011 at 3:04 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Mr.Russo

    "Tebow mania is sweeping the nation." ??? Mass idiocy is sweeping the nation.

    December 16, 2011 at 3:05 pm | Report abuse |
  9. jude

    nip stupid in the bud. next students will have to step over kids laying the ground for some peceived important reason.

    December 16, 2011 at 3:06 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Zed Dingo

    How the hell is this news at all? Journalism is dead.

    December 16, 2011 at 3:06 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Michael

    That's pure straight up bull manure. Creating a safety hazard? Are you joking me? Kids will be kids, and making fun of Tebow is no exception. At least they're not gyrating their hips or attempting to do some weird dance move while flailing their legs and arms.

    These are kids. Let them be kids for heaven's sake (no pun intended). Besides, I'm sure some of those school superintendent did some stupid crap back in their day, pretty sure they never would have gotten suspended for something as dumb as taking a knee between classes.

    December 16, 2011 at 3:06 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Lynn Walker

    Religiosity, definition two, "exaggerated or affected piety and religious zeal". Tebow has not paid enough attention to the New Testament where Christ tells us to pray in our closets and not make a show of our faith.

    As for these kids, it seemed pretty harmless to me, but they had been warned before.

    December 16, 2011 at 3:07 pm | Report abuse |
    • A Mom

      Tim Tebow seems like a sincere, hardworking young man. He isn't in the news for beating his girlfriend, fighting in bars, or dealing drugs – kind of refreshing among professional athletes. His very public "prayer displays" trouble me. I'm not suggesting that he should hide his faith. Matthew 6, 5-6 instruct us to pray go into our room and close the door to pray, not to pray on the street corner to be seen by men. That being said, I wish him well in his career and life.

      December 16, 2011 at 3:34 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Geoz

    here we go. This ought to bring out ALL of the crazies.

    December 16, 2011 at 3:08 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Jeff

    Kids get suspended for imitating something positive going on right now? What if these kids were muslim and they started praying? What if they were jewish? What if they were ANY other religion besides Christianity and performed a prayer in school. Those things would be accepted while these to Christian kids get ISS. If muslim or jewish or a child of any other religion kids were suspended, there would be a HUGE outcry over bigotry and unfairness. Make things fair and equal...either allow all religions the right to pray in school (including the white Christians) or NONE of them.

    December 16, 2011 at 3:09 pm | Report abuse |
    • A Mom

      I disagree. All I see is an attention seeking stunt.

      December 16, 2011 at 3:20 pm | Report abuse |
  15. columbus

    C'mon, why can't there be some common sense? This is silly kid stuff, if it created an unsafe situation then these kids are old enough to get it, just talk to them. What kind of an environment are we creating to treat kids like prisoners, any infraction results in punishment rather than an opportunity to learn.

    December 16, 2011 at 3:09 pm | Report abuse |
    • Chloeswift

      Well said. Schools should be places of learning and development. And kids should be taught common sense in order to take responsibility for themselves.

      December 16, 2011 at 3:18 pm | Report abuse |
    • Chloeswift

      Brilliant observation. The best post yet. Smart guy.... no wonder you found tyhe new world so easily.

      December 16, 2011 at 3:20 pm | Report abuse |
    • A Mom

      What you both say is true, however 2 of the 4 ringleaders had been warned about disruptive stunts in the hallway prior to this display.

      December 16, 2011 at 3:22 pm | Report abuse |
    • Chloeswift

      I understand Mom...... but these were kids acting dumb, the same as I did when that age, and you too possibly. Seeking attention, trying to look cool in front of the friends. Better maybe to have ignored them than to give them even more attention by perp walking them to the Gestap.

      December 16, 2011 at 3:27 pm | Report abuse |
    • A Mom

      I see your point. We all did some dumb things as kids. But I know when I've warned my kids not to do something, and they do it anyway... there are consequences.

      December 16, 2011 at 3:39 pm | Report abuse |
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