A Stockton, California, mother came up with an ingenious way to discipline her middle son after learning he got suspended from high school.
Nyia Williams’ son, Amaurryon Johnson, was barred from his San Juan County school for a five-day period. But instead of going the typical route of taking away the 10th grader’s phone or other electronic devices, she decided to put him to work.
“I just thought of something, you know what can I do for my son as a punishment,” Williams, a mother of four, told Sacramento, California’s Fox 40 Saturday.
That “something” was for her teenage son to head out into the neighborhood and mow the lawns of disabled, elderly and others in need in the community free of charge.
“My yard is already done, he’s done the yard perfect all summer since the first time he’s got suspended,” she said. “So I said, you know what? We’re going to go outside of our house and start helping other people.”
Williams took to Facebook to offer up her son’s lawn mowing services for people who needed it. Soon, requests poured in by the dozens.
“I really appreciate this from [my mom], I don’t really know what to say,” Amaurryon told the local news station. “After doing one or two I started easing into it, I started liking it.”
For Williams’ part, she hopes cutting grass and trimming hedges keeps her son out of trouble and serves as a positive way of cracking down on him.
“At the end of the day I still felt great about teaching the lesson to my son,” she said.
“I felt like I took from the community, so it’s good to give back to the community,” her son added, not disclosing exactly what led to his suspension.
And even after his suspension is up, Amaurryon plans to continue mowing lawns to earn some additional spending money.
Online, Williams has garnered lots of support for her atypical method of punishment.
“Awesome! Why are more parents NOT doing this? Admirable parenting! Great job!”
“I like this mom’s approach and it looks like the young man learned his lesson in a positive way. She’s an inspiration. Very creative.”
“Wonderful parenting. Such a great job. In my family going to school was the job and when that job was not done up to the potential,well we got that person a job at McDonalds(which this person did not like). Best job ever at teaching. Way to go.”
“This is one lesson he will never forget. Great thinking Mom. Best lesson ever. He is going to grow up to be a great man.”