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Were Kids Punished or Rewarded?


POSTED: Friday, December 10, 2010 - 7:09pm

UPDATED: Wednesday, December 22, 2010 - 5:12am

EL PASO - Were some kids punished, or others simply rewarded? It's a hot debate tonight among E.P.I.S.D. parents.

As we showed you on Thursday, an angry parent filmed video that he says show some Carlos Rivera Elementary students being forced to exercise because they did not bring two canned goods, per day, for a food drive.

"There is no way that there was any harm or humiliation intended as far as they're concerned," Flavia Davis said.

Davis is the Vice-President of the PTA. She says it wasn't punishment. She said the kids who brought food everyday were rewarded with playtime during the entire P.E. class, but the ones who didn't donate had to stay exercising.

Valerie Lucero, the parent of another child forced to exercise, says it's still unfair.

"Two cans per student I think is okay, but everyday cans is out of the question. A lot of people out there don't have money, are struggling to make a living, and I think it was out of the question," Lucero said.

"No, it probably wouldn't be fair in that respect, but once again this is all optional. I probably do have the means to send my children with two cans a day, and yet I have not sent them with one can all week, yet," Davis said.

We've been told because of our report the school has decided not to continue dividing kids.

"If the principal sees it fit to stop it to avoid this negative publicity well then maybe it should stop, but has it been blown out of proportion? I definitely think so," Davis said.

"I think all the parents should know what's going on in the school. For a parent to go out there and record the students if that's what it takes for him to get it out there, and they don't understand, it was hurting some of the kids," Lucero said.

For the second time in two days we asked E.P.I.S.D. to address the parent's concerns. Both times a spokeswoman assured us the district would, but to this point they have not done so.

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If this mom would send two cans a day should would probably be able to lose some weight.

And if I was a parent of one of those kids he video taped. I WOULD definetely sue his ---- because he has no bussiness taping a minor whitout parental permission!!!! what an idiot.

The school only mishandled the rewards issue. They could have given a candy or a schoolar dollar, something less than that. My son really felt punished they are only kids and cant understand this concept. Our family is struggling but I want to show my kids that we can help the less fortunate, so we contributed more than enough; he still got two days of "punishment" which I think is not fair. But I do have to agree that it was never intented to be as punishment but as a reward.

So you think a monkey could teach? Then go for it. You wouldn't last 6 months, I'll bet. Not only are you misinformed, you are an example of the negativity that has been placed on teachers, even incredibly talented ones. As for the canned food drive. It was completely voluntary, but I have a feeling that next year, may be nonexistant because of whiney people like you, who don't have anything better to do but criticize the actions of others.

Yeah right, the school doesn't care about the so-called needy families they have food stamps and every other goverment help, they are just trying to compete to make their sad school look decent, and it's VOLUNTARY, most of these families don't have a dime to their name and schools want them to give up all their groceries so food stamp people can eat more. Demanding a child to bring 2 EVERYDAY? No, those needy people need to go find themselves a job and stop freeloading off working parents.

1st off... 2 cans a day? for how long? That's a little much. Most people have multiple children, are single parents, or are financially struggling as well.

2nd- Exercise is not a punishment.Lazy parent + impressionable children + Anti-exercising = OBESE CHILDREN. using a "get of PE class" free card just sways children's minds to think exercising is negative.

Bottom line 2 cans daily = excessive. Reward should have been more like a movie. Exercise is not the enemy. laziness is


People are rewarded all the time in life so what's wrong with doing something nice and getting something nice in return?

They are all getting exercise at P.E. no matter what whether they bring in cans or not!

OH MY GOSH!! This has just gotten completely out of hand. Parents and media, get your facts straight. If you were more involved you would know what is really going on. No one said the students HAD to bring in cans or how many. It is voluntary and the kids were told that. No one is seeing the good that Rivera is doing. Many families are being helped along with the Child Crisis Center. This father is hurting his daughters more by acting in such manner. Filming without parent permission APPALING

with all the obesity in school how is this punishment? all we had to eat were beans and still found a way to donate a couple of cans. you people who complain about helping your child at home are the ones with a monkey mentallity. why is it so hard to find time to help your own child? it's you people who don't teach your child and values. why is this person taking pictures of other children without permission? he/she should be sued for doing something without consent.

Place yourself on the child's shoes!
You'll be EMBARRASSED !!!
I strongly believe that this tactic is to pressure the families through the kids who come home complaining of being treated differently and embarrassed for not sharing a can.


after a couple of days the child will encounter embarrassment and mock by other students. If YOU want to reward the other students, try a COUPON for Pitter Piper Pizza.

it is unfortunate that a SCHOOL makes kid "BUY" their way out of a PE class how much does the school want to "BUY" their way out of the math Test???

It is up to us as parents to remind our children the true purpose of bringing in the cans and that a couple of days of free play is icing on the cake. Approx. 30 needy families and the Child Crisis Center will be helped by the efforts of this school. This has been going on for 13 years with no problem until the shameful acts of this father. He needs to get a job or at least volunteer to be constructive rather than destructive. He has NEVER done anything at or for the school!

"Icing on the Cake", "Shameful acts", "Needs to get a Job", "be Constructive... Destructive." Great Quotes Mrs. Davis. 1st - If I am donating my time or my goods should I expect something in Return? Why bother calling it a Donation?
2nd (and this covers a couple of things here) - Who are you to call his acts "Shameful" and how do you know he "Needs to get a Job"?
Vice President of your PTA and publicly try and castrate a man for bringing to light an issue with the kids. Really Nice!

My daughter attends Carlos Rivera and she has been donating canned foods on a daily basis. In no way are the kids being punished as this ignorant father claims so. This is totally ridiculous and instead of complaining why does this man not think about what a great thing Carlos Rivera is doing for the needy families. I have no problem donating canned foods for the families of El Paso that are not so fortunate. Why are we not asking this man who gave him permission to film the children?

P.E. Is physical education key word is physical.How is this punishment?they are doing something their supposed to be doing in the first place. No wonder are kids are so fat now a time the teacher should put controls in their hands and not bother the kids. Parents like you are gonna make our country crumble

This is quite possibly the worst example of what parents feel about teachers taking on the responsibility of teaching everything at school without regard to the parents, their values and the overall picture. Being in the military I am not allowed to "physically discipline" my soldiers for this. If something is voluntary, then it is voluntary. If the PTA/school is so rapped up in their image by how many donations they receive, then they should go buy it themselves. Reprehensible action.

No students were physically disciplined. The students in the video are in regular PE doing their daily exercises. The free pass to the playground was an incentive to get more food for the needy families of Rivera. Their are a lot of families who rely on the free breakfast and free lunch program. When school is closed for the holidays they do not receive these meals. The can good donations are to help these families during the winter break when school is closed.

EPISD administrators obviously have much to learn; they're currently under investigation by the FBI for allegedly denying students the right to an education, and now this...scratch the surface and I'm certain you'll find more under the EPISD veil of deception and unethical practices.

Scratch the surface and you'll see how much is just for ratings!

At that age I would think I was being punished too. Exercise over play??

I assume that the teachers also brought two cans a day so that a good example of giving was set. They must have because I didn't see any adult exercising. Right?

No one was required to bring 2 cans a day. This has been blow out of proportion. The families are just trying to help those in need.

I don't agree with the two cans per day rule either. It certainly is a bit much especially with the economy the way it is, but I think we are getting off track. There is no punishment here. Those kids are completing their required daily PE time. The kids that gave cans are just being allowed to complete their time in another way. Why didn't that parent just bring up the issue to the administration? I for one would have been extremely upset that someone was videotaping my children on the sly

It was NOT a rule!!

No one was told to bring 2 cans a day.

I hate when the school system uses our little ones for commercial purposes. Like when they send them home with a catalog of cheap stuff with high prices like a can of peanuts for 8 dollars or a bag of jelly beans or a box of pretzels for the same price. You can buy these items for a dollar anywhere else!... Somebody at the school systemm is helping someone get rich taking advantage and abusing our kids. I send my kids to school to be educated, not to be used for some company to make money.

Why do they think these students are being punished?They do these exercises everyday during PE, so are they being"punished everyday?The free pass to the playground was an incentive to get more donations of food.There are several students at the school who receive free breakfast and lunch.When the school is closed during the holidays they do not receive these meals. The canned food is to help these families have food during this time.No one was told to bring 2 cans a day.

I moved here three years ago and the first thing I was told was "Avoid EPISD schools" and after everything I have read lately I am very glad I did! Someone made a foolish decision in this situation, if they wanted to reward those kids who brought the cans then a pizza party or cupcakes would have been fine! THINK BEFORE YOU ACT! And kudos to the dad who filmed, those are OUR children!!!

Keep in mind that the father you want to give kudos to, does not allow his children to ever play at the playground. They are not allowed 3ft off the ground.....ummmm. What is he complaining about?!!!!!

EPISD is one of the top districts in the state..we are a recognized district...I guess nobody told you that cupcakes and pizza are against school policy and thats in all should THINK BEFORE YOU WRITE

Now that I've had a taste of dealing with the skewed media, I say "Think for yourself before you act". You are giving kudos to a dad who cussed out the Asst. Principal and called her the F-word in front of the very daughters he pretends to be "protecting". As for his video, my own son witnessed him telling his daughter to put her nose on the wall and had the other one doing jumping jacks at an optional after school program. The other video as stated many times, is a regular PE class.

You are right. What happened there is a pefect example of the backward mentality that is enforced, this is enforcing blackmail as a healthy habit, bring a donation or else mentality. What if you have a different belief system, that addresses a cure, and not a sympton, which is a waste of time money & effort, what losers episd. If they were really serious, do not give a cn of foof to the needy, they have welfare for that, instead, give a job to the needy. WHY IS THERE NO COMMON SENSE HERe!

I'm a Rivera parent. The kids you saw on the tape were excercising at PE as normal. No one has been "punished" or "forced!" Bringing food was optional. If a child took 2 cans, they were rewarded with free play. The woman said, "I think all the parents should know what's going on in the school." It seems she didn't bother to find out the exact details herself. Many people were working hard to help our community and now it has stopped because someone's child had to do some jumping jacks.

Children who brought cans should not have been rewarded. This is a back handed punishment for children who didn't bring cans. There are many families struggling to feed themselves at this time and children should never be separated and singled out for any reason, especially if it is not even under their control. The school and any parents who think this is acceptable need to take a closer look at their values and the message they are sending their children.

well according to our kids, they had to run extra laps for not taking a can of food. I believe that qualifies as punishment. Now, if you are well off and can donate so much then do it. But some of us cant afford it. Thats why its called a donation. The library has a dictionary, you should look it up.

Well your kids didn't tell you the truth. You should ask them how many laps they run normally. No one has had to run extra laps for anything that has to do with the canned food drive. Now if they don't know how to behave themselves in school maybe that's why they ran extra laps or for another reason, but it wasn't because they didn't bring cans. Maybe your child/children didn't want you to know that part. It was just easier to blame it on the cans.

No one ran extra laps. There are many things in this story that were not reported correctly. People were just trying to help each other.

"No one has been 'punished' or 'forced!'" What would you call it? Hello, when they are told to do excersices, they are not forced, or is that the reward of good health?
"Many people were working hard to help our community and now it has stopped because someone's child had to do some jumping jacks." To have kids miss the "non-punishment" work-out and free-play as a reward is wrong. If you are doing something for the community, knowing you did something for the community is reward enough.

To help the community, let them help themselves, by giving them a job, a sense of responsibility, not a handout, and build self worth, and esteem, not shame, guilt, complexes, give the needy a job, is much better than a hand out.

Un- fortunately sometimes the crime does not fit the punishment imposed,ultimately the final word ends with the principal of the school. The school has reference books in her office that are basic guide lines as to how certain situations are to be handled and the punishment that should be administered. However not every situation that comes up will be listed or etched in stone.At this we look to the principal to make a call and use professional means when dealing with these situations.Let the

If I'm not mistaken I thought that donations were supposed to be voluntary.Why is it then this woman thinks it's ok to punish some students for not participating. Some parents are having a hard time making ends meet,without having to buy extra just to make the PTA look good. Ms Davis needs to understand that everyone is not as well off as she is. It's just not right to punish kids for something thats not there fault in the first place. Larry

This is not a PTA project so please do better than the media and get your facts straight (as they can't seem to get it right even when the facts are given). I am comfortable, but not well off and once again, this is VOLUNTARY as are all fundraisers. When a fundraiser is done, the kids that sell more are rewarded with prizes by the company. There is a huge difference between not getting a reward/prize and punishing. My kids didn't take one can in all week and had no prob doing their regular PE

The pta is a sham, what was once a good idea, years ago, has turned into a tool for teachers to get parents to do the teacher's job. For example, instead of TEACHING kids, they write it on a board, and tell the kids to take it home, let your parents tell you how to do it. That's teaching? A monkey can do that, so to me, they have the mentality, and intelligence, and even the personality of a monkey.

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