Nursing Student "Dismissed" for Facebook Photo’s Epic Battle Continues

Nursing school really is a circus, complete with clowns, ringmasters, lions, and flaming hoops to jump through.

Johnson County Community College lawsuit.

To hear their response, one might assure this girl expelled a fetus herself and was proudly poking it at it with a pair of hemostats. She didn’t. She took a picture, which her instructor allowed, excited to be participating in healthcare. I would really like to know what the “mother” in regard to said placenta thinks of this nonsense. Would she agree that the action would surmount to being “insensitive and disrespectful toward the mother and the human tissue involved”?

Since the school wants to break it down to being “insensitive to human tissue”, then I better never hear of a someone picking off a scab and throwing it away, because that would surely be “insensitive to human tissue”. Does anyone really want me to get started on an “insensitive to human tissue” rant, because I could so go there, and it might be a book by the time I was done.

I also find it comical that they choose to clarify the whole “expelled” verses “dismissed” classification. The entire scenario was completely blown out of proportion and the fact that mere months from graduation she is being forces to put her life on hold is what is most upsetting to me for Miss Byrnes.

Wait, I take that back, what is most upsetting to me is the fact that even though the school admits the student is apologetic, and apparently there is no social media policy in place (least that I’ve heard tell of), they still chose to take such an extreme and cruel punishment. Not only could she not graduate, she was going to be forced to jump through even more hoops than the usual brought on by the 3 ring challenge that is nursing school. And these hoops are flaming, twisting high in the air, and incredibly arrogant, in my humble opinion.

“The bottom line is that the student brought all this on herself and should now accept the consequences of her own actions.” I humbly disagree.

“The fact that this story has so quickly gone viral is evidence itself of how damaging social media can be if not used appropriately.” Now this statement is true, to some regard, but I feel that the damage that has been done is to the school’s reputation, and not because of the facebook photo, but by the numerous blogs, twitter, and facebook reactions the incident has created.
I’m sure the school has created a social media policy, or will very soon, in regards to this. Really, that should have been all the incident amounted to.

See what others are saying about this Social Media Opportunity:

The Wall Street Journal: Odd Facebook Post Leads to Student’s Ouster, Suit : Nursing Student Expelled for Facebook Photo: The Problem Beneath the Problem

Those Emergency Blues: The Placenta, The Nursing Student and the Teachable Moment

The Huffington Post: Doyle Barnes, Nursing Student, Expelled For Posting Placenta Photo On Facebook

impacted Nurse: Nursing Student Expelled over Facebook Pic
Nursetopia: Consider Me Your “Nursing Student Expelled for FB
Placenta Photo” Aggregator
– Will do
And many many more.

If you think I am being ranty about this topic, I am.
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9 thoughts on “Nursing Student "Dismissed" for Facebook Photo’s Epic Battle Continues”

  1. It seems increasingly likely that here is no limit on your ability to be a social media assassin, whether it be against Banner or against Johnson County Community College.
    About the only responsible assumption an adult could come to is yes, this is an unfortunate incident, but what exactly prevents this student from perusing their ADN at another school? Again, the social media circus surrounding this, and the issue in AZ, pretty much guarantees that this nursing student will be unemployable should she ever eventually graduate from a nursing program somewhere else.
    So the school didn’t have a social media policy. So what? Did the hospital? Everyone knows you can’t take photos in the hospital that are even tangentially related to patients. While the DoL has held that an employee can write anything on Facebook about their employer that they want, and not be terminated for it so long as they’re not on company time, this case is different. When it comes to posting anything on FB that’s not directly connected to your colleagues at work, in the break room or cafeteria, the proper response would be to “just say no?” Unfortunate, yes, but the proclivity that some have to use social media as a bullying weapon against an employer or a nursing school only indicates how far some are away from being responsible with their use of free speech.

  2. This situation was an educational opportunity for the world, at a time everyone was “trying on” the freedom of social media and some of the unforseen consequences/responsibilities that would bring. If this case (or any other) were clear-cut, it would never have been as phenomenally conroversial. BOTH sides had their valid points. I must admit, it is entertaining for me to see how the college is now reacting to being “insensitively” persecuted, as they originally did to this student…. turnabout is a BITCH, eh? Nevertheless…As a result of this fracus, it did teach all institutions/corporations/individuals the imperative need to establish clear policies regarding social media.

  3. I could totally understand if there were any identifying factors in this pic. I didn’t see the pic closely enough to notice but if the name of the school was on her lab coat or something, that may be a little wrong. But if there were NO identifying factors at all? What the hell, people! Get a freakin grip! Hell, unless my placenta was attached to a dead baby, I wouldn’t care if it was plastered all over the internet! It is a learning moment and it’s not like my face, name, birthday and social security number are engraved on the organ!!! People need to lighten up.

  4. The case was overturned in court. Woohoo! I just hope the poor girl can get a job after she graduates in May, now that her name is all over the internet. And I hope these four girls can get through their final semester, because I’d guess that the faculty will sadly be looking for revenge and any and every excuse to fail the girls again.

    1. The case was overturned: Legally, the college had not a leg on which to stand because the student could not have violated a policy that had yet to be established….. the college, like many, had yet to realize the need for established policies regarding social media. The judge in this case did point out that the pic was in very poor taste… albeit not a violation of pt. privacy. And, even though such an act is not a violation of privacy, institutions have always had the right to deem what they feel is an inappropriate reflection of an image they wish to project… thus, the need for clearly established policy. I, too, wonder how this new nurse shall obtain employment in light of all the publicity… her name and image were EVERYWHERE.

  5. adventuresofaPICUnurseblogspot

    Wow- this is the first I’ve heard about this (goes to show you how little “news” one gets when in grad school full time while working full time!)…I honestly think this is RIDICULOUS!!! The picture was showing a girl excited about her opportunities, and without any patient identifiers, I don’t see how she did anything wrong, let alone illegal! It seems to me that in an effort to be “above reproach” this school went WAY above and beyond…and not in a positive way! Thanks for sharing…and I enjoyed your “ranting!”

  6. I took a look at the photo and honestly, i really don’t know why the school has their panties in a bunch over the photo… looks like a very nice and respectful student showing a “whatever” in a basin, and I say “whatever, because really, unless someone SAID it was a placenta, you could hardly tell. And I am an L&D RN. I don’t see any identifying marks, names, places, no rolly eyed funny face/sticking out of tongue….it looks like a normal, nice, respectful serious student posing for a camera shot. Would they have reacted the same about a bunch of test tubes filled with blood in hand? Or how about a slide for the microscope with amniotic fluid on it? Or cleaning up a splash of urine on the floor? I just don’t get the drama from the school end of thing….but I do understand the hubub from the student/public/blog end……anyway. It’s unfortunate for the student, and I would take it to the nth end with lawyers to recover losses just because……..The school and the instructors should have been more adult about the whole thing, but then, when I was in nursing school – oh – say – 30 some odd years ago….it wasn’t too much different. How things haven’t changed. So sad, really.

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