Flying past the competition

Bart Sutherin is a total helicopter parent. Really. He flew his son, ninth grader Joseph Sutherin, to his first day of school this year in a rented bird. Unfortunately, neither Joseph nor his father thought to alert school district officials or the local sheriff's office to their plan. And the unexpected chopper was reported to the FAA, which is now investigating the incident. The idea was to "make a positive impression on the other students," says the father. Joseph agrees, "It wasn't something everyone did every day. It would be extraordinary, and I could say, ‘Yeah, I flew into the school in a helicopter.'" But Principal David E. Cunningham would like to keep helicopter parents strictly metaphorical: This is "not something that needs to happen every day--or ever."

"Boy gets special ride to school--in a helicopter; FAA alerted," by Denise-Marie Balona, Orlando Sentinel, August 26, 2009

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