SAN DIEGO (CBS 8) - A North County student and his parents are fighting to keep him in school after they say the zero tolerance policy for San Pasqual High School went way too far.
Sam Serrato faces expulsion for having a knife in his truck, and he is not the only student facing harsh consequences under the controversial zero tolerance policy.
Two weeks ago, Sam who is a junior and tri-star athlete at San Pasqual High School, drove his father's truck to school.
His father had accidentally left a three-inch pocket knife in the console. A drug-sniffing dog swept the parking lot which led to the hunting knife.
"This is not my fault. It's not something I intentionally did. I don't understand why they have to do this whole process," said Sam.
The school's zero tolerance policy for knives on campus requires suspension while the board determines if the student should be expelled.
Sam's father says it was his mistake. "I have no explanation to him and that is what makes it so hard," he said as he fought back tears.
The Serrato's have hundreds of supporters who showed up to the Escondido Union High School District board meeting Tuesday night. The item was not on the agenda so trustees could not take action but a majority of the school board sided with the family.
Rather than reinstating Sam back to class on Wednesday, the board will ask the staff if they can accelerate the expulsion hearing originally set for February 25th.
"I feel like there is hope, but I honestly fee like they could move it faster. I feel like that is what they should do," said Sam.
Another student was also caught with fishing bait in his truck.
His parents told the board they tried to stay out because their son is joining the Marines, but they too are fighting the expulsion.
On Wednesday, the superintendent will ask staff if the board has the power to accelerate the expulsion hearing for the two students.