Friday, July 22, 2005

Teacher Fired For Being Republican?

I've heard of stranger things. The Education Wonks have a story about a Republican teacher who claims she was fired, in part, because she had a picture of President Bush on her wall, amongst pictures of other presidents. Interestingly enough, the principal is the wife of a local Democrat Assemblyman.

The Education Wonks bring up some very interesting points about the teacher's proven teaching ability, or lack of documentation thereof. I hope they follow this story through to its conclusion.

During the year I have two pictures of President Bush hanging over my desk. I also have a picture of me standing in front of the White House giving two thumbs-up. No, I never had a picture of President Clinton over my desk. But that's no reason to say I can't have a picture of the current president in my classroom if I so desire. When I was growing up, every classroom had a picture of Presidents Washington and Lincoln, sometimes one of President Jefferson, and often one of the current president at the time. We've lost something, given that in 8 years of teaching as well as visiting my own son's classrooms I've not seen such pictures except in a few history classes.

I also have banners from West Point (my alma mater) and the Air Force Academy (where I spent a semester and currently have a former student attending) hanging on the walls. I keep a picture of me and my son on my desk. I think this coming year I'll have my cardboard Master Yoda cutout as a teacher's aide.

Oh yeah, I have lots of educational stuff on the walls, too, including my section of "math in the comics". I guess my point here is my classroom reflects a lot of what's important to me but doesn't force any particular view on my students. It would be an interesting fight if someone were to tell me I couldn't post a picture of the current president in my classroom, or any other US president for that matter--yes, in a math class. That, not my having a picture of President Bush, would be injecting politics into my classroom.

2 comments:

Mother was a Hampster said...

"I guess my point here is my classroom reflects a lot of what's important to me but doesn't force any particular view on my students."

No, that's what your website's for.

Darren said...

My student's aren't forced to come here. Those that do, on both ends of the political spectrum, do so of their own volition.