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Homeless "performance" gets high school student suspended

(CBS) PITTSBURGH - Last month, Michael Bodomov got an assignment for a drama class at Mt. Lebanon High School: Create a character of his own choosing.

He decided to be a homeless man named John.

By all accounts, Michael gave a very strong performance - which got him suspended from school.

According to CBS Pittsburgh, the 17-year-old's costume was layers of coats, fingerless gloves, a grimy face and carrying a garbage bag. He also did a lot of mumbling. The day the assignment was due his mother dropped him off at school early in disguise.

"And kind of knocked on a door, an exterior door, and they were immediately confronted by an administrator," Mt. Lebanon Police Lt. Aaron Lauth told CBS Pittsburgh.

Michael continued to stay in character, and the police were called.

"Pretty shortly after they arrived they determined that this was a student playing a role," Lauth said.

The school district would not comment directly on the incident, but Superintendent Dr. Timothy Steinhauer issued this statement: "Student and staff safety is always our first concern. This is non-negotiable. If someone attempts to enter our building without identifying themselves it is considered a school security issue ... staff responded exactly as they have been trained."

Michael Bodomov was given a two-day suspension.

According to CBS Pittsburgh, the punishment was not because he dressed up for a classroom assignment. It was because he didn't identify himself, which is considered a violation of the student code of conduct.

As for a review of the drama student's assignment?

Convincing performance, worth of suspension.

  • Barry Leibowitz

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