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Student's father: Expulsion 'almost surreal'

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Rachel Boim, left, and her father David Boim.

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(CNN) -- High school freshman Rachel Boim was expelled for writing a fictional account of a student who falls asleep in class and dreams of killing a teacher. School officials decided later that she can return to school Monday while officials reconsider the disciplinary action.

Rachel and her father David Boim talked to CNN's Soledad O'Brien from their Roswell, Georgia, home Friday. O'Brien asked Rachel about the reconsideration of disciplinary action:

RACHEL BOIM: I am not really sure what to think about it. I mean, if it's, like, that they really want me back in the school or if it's just that the media has gotten involved and they don't want the media involved.

O'BRIEN: David, obviously you guys have been now embroiled in this controversy with the school. Can you understand the school's perspective, a teacher takes that, reads that says, "Oh, my goodness, this sounds to me like a kid who is planning on shooting up our school?"

DAVID BOIM: The school administrators live in a what-if world. So I can understand them being concerned and calling us in and having a discussion. But what -- everything that transpired beyond that is almost surreal. The fact that her teacher took the book because it might have been a distraction in class, that's great. The fact that the journal was not returned and he actually read the journal -- that's very, very disturbing to me. And she was expelled for inappropriate writings.

What is appropriate writing? What is not appropriate writing? What is an appropriate thought? What is not an appropriate thought? Where does that erosion of civil liberties and our rights as American citizens -- where does that begin and where does that end? That -- those are very troubling issues. And I made it very clear to them from the very beginning that those were my concerns.

O'BRIEN: The school might say in return, as you say, "We live in a what-if world." And what if we did not act upon a story that's clearly violent? What if we did not do anything and the next day something horrible had happened? Wouldn't we be to blame?

DAVID BOIM: And I agree with that perspective. I agree that once the story was no longer part or privy to a private journal, for them to be concerned and have us come in and have discussions. That's great.

But at that point, common sense ended. They didn't go in and look at Rachel's record. They didn't get a statement ... for the record. They did not get statements from my wife or myself. They just literally took this story and said, "This is the fact. This is the evidence." And suspended her for 10 days and then later expelled her.

O'BRIEN: Rachel, I'm going to ask you the final question today. I know that you grew up fairly close -- or went to school fairly close to where the Columbine shooting happened. Did that play a big role in the stories that you write?

RACHEL BOIM: Well, I think it's just the fact that I've been exposed to violence that really made me write this story. I wasn't thinking of Columbine when I wrote this story. It's just the fact that there are school shootings now. And it is really scary. And it just seemed like a good line for a story.

O'BRIEN: All right. Rachel Boim and David Boim, thanks for joining us. I certainly appreciate your time.

RACHEL BOIM: No problem.

DAVID BOIM: Thank you.


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