Friday, March 14, 2008

3 Crazy Stories For Friday

Here are 3 more stories that will have you shaking your head.

Chilly student in hot water
A 16-year-old Lawrence girl sweated out an in-school suspension yesterday for succumbing to her shivers and donning a sweater violating a dress code...

Figueroa thought nothing would be wrong with wearing a matching sweater in order to stay warm.

Florida Middle School Teacher Charged for Sex With 14-Year-Old Student
TAMPA — A Hillsborough County middle school teacher has been arrested and is charged with having sex with a 14-year-old student.
(Editor's note: The teacher isn't what I'd call attractive--and I'm being generous with my wording--and she did it with a 14-year-old boy. Remember: there's not much appealing, and nothing sexually appealing, about junior high school students. Eww.)

Teacher Yanked From Classroom After Alleged 'Perky' Comment About Female Student's Body

A Florida history teacher is out of the classroom after allegedly telling a 13-year-old student she had “nice, perky t**s” in front of the class, reports.
That's two Florida stories in a row. Way to go, Florida--one more and you get a tic-tac-toe!


Anonymous said...

Come on, the teacher who had sex with the 14-year old was a math teacher. Obviously, she was trying to illustrate the point that one plus one equals five to nine.

With regard to the "sweater" story, what do you expect? When a bureaucrat ignores the rules they go out on limb. When they enforce the rules, no matter how mindlessly, they're covered. Which would you do keeping in mind that the former might easily lead to your being canned and the latter to promotion?

This is just the kind of thing that's caused me to settle on the school district as the source of most of what's wrong with public education. Along with the overt injection of political considerations into education, the district begets the district bureaucracy.

The inevitable process by which the bureaucracy does business is in the response of School Committee "the issue of wearing sweaters over the uniform isn’t new and will be addressed." Formulation of new rules to address the shortcomings of the old rules with judgment being gradually, but inevitably, excluded from the institution.

Ellen K said...

The sweater story is yet another in a list of stories where zero tolerance overrides common sense. But that is largely the result of aggressive litigation by parents fighting every single rule from cheerleader tryouts to prom dresses. When lawyers get involved, nobody wins.

As for the other two stories, I would be interested to know if these teachers came through a conventional education program or an alternative certification program. I know there are some very good teachers out there that are alternatively certified, but in my experience as a parent and my view as a teacher, the teachers who have the most potential for such issues are from alternative programs. I don't want to label all with the same brush, but in all the cases of "problem teachers" at my school and at the school my kids attended, this was the case. Plus, when I was dealing with my youngest and his IEP, those teachers were also the least likely to do what was legally required unless I started documenting and threatened to bring in a lawyer. And that was after several years of dealing with issues. It was only after the fact that I realized this was an issue. Perhaps there is something that needs to be added to such programs, or even to all education college degree plans, that include things such as proper attired, decorum, legal issues and behavior. Perhaps it is just the results of a society that has torn down barriers of civilized behavior, but it really needs to be addressed.

Darren said...

I know you're not intending to paint with a broad brush, and I'm certainly not taking any offense from what you said, but you *do* know that I'm a product of alternative credentialing, right? :-)

Ellen K said...

I am aware of that, Darren, and I know that there are some excellent teachers who came from outside the conventional education factories. But I have also seen some of these teachers who ignore the rules because they don't plan on fulfilling the three year program and some of them prey on students in a variety of ways. In every case of sexual misconduct except one, the teacher involved was an ACP. That is not to say it is the cause of the problem, but I think if you have worked for a long time in a situation with adults, it may be hard to change your workday behavior when working with kids. And let's face it, people in the workplace do hit on each other and hook up. I can see where that would be especially hard for a teacher that was very young in a high school situation where the kids were almost the same age and maturity level. Just another reason that high school teachers should have a few years of experience before working with older kids.