ESSENCE Poll: Did School Officials Overreact by Expelling Kiera Wilmot for Explosive Science Experiment?

A Florida teen dubbed a “good kid” by classmates and principal is in hot water this week after she detonated a water bottle filled with a concoction of household chemicals on school grounds.

Kiera Wilmot, 16, is accused of mixing several household chemicals into an 8-oz bottle, causing the top to pop off and smoke to billow in a small explosion, reports local station, WTSP. Police arrested Wilmot at the school and led her away in handcuffs. She was taken to a juvenile assessment center and later charged with possession and discharging of a weapon on school grounds and discharging a destructive device. Both charges are felonies.

Wilmot was also expelled from school and will continue her education through an expulsion program. She told police that she was conducting a science experiment, though her teacher said she did not assign the project.

Students and staff have come to Wilmot’s defense, pointing to her exemplary grades. “She made a bad choice. Honestly, I don’t think she meant to ever hurt anyone,” principal Ron Pritchard told WTSP. “She wanted to see what would happen [when the chemicals mixed] and was shocked by what it did.”

The school district released a statement saying that they had to “uphold our code of conduct rules” in order “to maintain a safe and orderly learning environment.”

Did the school district overreact or was Wilmot in the wrong? Share your thoughts and comments with us below. [poll id=304556]

Loading the player...