When 14-year-old Kim Mitchell got in trouble for being a bystander in a fight at Miami Edison Senior High School two years ago, she was worried about getting suspended. But she says her punishment ended up being much worse: She was forced to spend three school days in a dingy office building without any classwork or instruction, whiling away time between restless naps and staring contests with a clock on the wall.
“[They] don’t teach us anything, and there are no guidance counselors,” Mitchell says. “It’s a waste of time. I might as well have been suspended and gone home.”