Without evidence of benefit, an intervention should not be presumed to be beneficial or safe.

- Rogue Medic

Zero Tolerance – What Does It Mean?

Zero Tolerance is good. Zero Tolerance keeps people from making mistakes.


Zero Tolerance will keep people from making certain mistakes, because Zero Tolerance will keep people from making decisions.

Maybe we need to prevent the people, who make decisions, from making decisions.


That would suggest that we cannot fill administrative positions with people competent to make decisions.

While there are individual cases of bad decisions, this alternative is much worse.

Foolproof is a fantasy.

I do not believe that it is accurate to conclude that administrators cannot make good decisions. And I am regularly critical of administrators. Rather this is a disturbingly reaction to our fear of bad decisions. Zero Tolerance is an example of a bad decision.

We improve our abilities at important skills by regularly practicing and reviewing the use of those skills.

Can critical judgment be replaced by flow sheets/algorithms/guidelines?

No. Critical judgment can be augmented by flow sheets/algorithms/guidelines, but not replaced – at least not safely.

Read more about a particularly bad example of Zero Tolerance in this post at of mule dung and ash. Zero Tolerance – Unexpected, but welcome ruling.

This administration of this school is as idiotic as the fast food managers who strip search their employees based on prank phone calls from people impersonating police officers. Protecting children from the evils of MotrinTM.

Apparently, 8 of the Supreme Court Justices feel that the Constitution does a better job of protecting children, than a school’s slavish devotion to its Zero Tolerance policy.