Free Lance-Star reporter Amy Umble covers Stafford County schools and other education issues

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“Banana man” suspended from Colonial Forge

Click to listen to the Banana-man song. Click here  to see the principal’s suspension letter.

Today, I interviewed Colonial Forge High School sophomore Bryan Thompson, who was suspended after running onto the football field during halftime wearing a banana costume.  Colonial Forge Principal Karen Spillman is recommending that he be suspended for the rest of the year.

Bryan’s mom, Tavia, is appealing the suspension.  Read tomorrow’s paper for the full story.

Here’s an email Bryan’s mom recently sent to Colonial Forge’s principal:

On 09/16/2011, my son Bryan Thompson made a bad compulsive decision, that embarrassed me and his family.

During the halftime session of Friday’s football game (while the field was empty of players and faculty), Bryan took it upon himself to parade across the football field in a banana costume, without my prior knowledge. This particular episode, although harmless created a disturbance that interrupted the attention of staff member’s, families, and the football teams in attendance. For this, I am deeply sorry for Bryan’s abrupt behavior.

This appeal letter is in reference to the current 10 day suspension, and possible expulsion of Bryan Thompson. Whereas, there should be punishment set aside for this behavior and future behavior. It however should not result in my son being expelled for the school year or, having a criminal record.

As his parent, I plan on monitoring Bryan’s behavior and seeking medical attention for his Autism which causes him to have a lack of skills when interacting with others , abstract use of humor and obsessive interest in a specific item (banana costume). I know that his autistic behaviors can be often times be mistaken and him being judged as a bad kid.  I however assure that this type of incident will never happen again.

I do hope this matter can be resolved, without further interrupting Bryan’s education. Again, I am extremely sorry for the whole incident, and I do wish to apologize to the school, family, and the football team.

I would also like to offer to purchase a Banana mascot costume for the school, for the thousands of children and parents that enjoyed seeing the banana run down the football field.

Taking something negative and turning it into something positive is always the best example to set for our children.

Thank you,

Tavia Thompson