Is it the fault of technology, are the powers of secrecy and clandestineness too powerful for human nature to resist. Many parents in the car line are blaming the technology. Seriously, use of technology in this case is like blaming the gun in a shooting. But maybe the cell phone/smart phone is now a device that needs oversight. What are the rights of Freedom of Speech in this new tech world where teachers could abuse their students over technology? Should e-mails, texts and photos be subjected to review, so that the temptation is tempered by the idea that use of these devices can be monitored? If parents supply a phone to a student, they should supervise how it is being used. Since we acknowledge some parents are not monitoring their children, how can a principal protect her staff and the students? Is it acceptable to monitor technology while on campus?
Maybe the problem isn't the temptation to commit nefarious acts on these devices, but our culture that leads teachers and students to use text and emails so freely without concern about being caught. Students discussing the situation are at a loss as to why the relationship between a student and a teacher is untenable. Students did not understand why the teacher is in trouble. The student and the teacher had a relationship, everyone was happy. Perhaps students are confused about the responsibilities of a teacher and how they are held to a higher standard? Of course these are the same students who are developing their values as they watch movies alike Easy A, TV shows like Pretty Little Liars and literature that encourages relationships with your teacher as a rite of passage. Are they right, have students who can be charged as adults in a crime, earned the right to engage in relationships with instructors?
In my humble opinion, teenagers, although young and impressionable, need to understand this behavior is illegal, and I understand the teacher is ultimately responsible for the abhorrent behavior, but maybe our culture is sending the wrong message in its media and entertainment. Anti-bullying, drugs and drinking have all earned a place in the classroom, maybe its time to cover student teacher behavior, sexting and adult child relationships. Its time a line in the sand needs to be drawn. Perhaps it is time that both students and teachers who use technology for a crime on school property be subjected to the same punishment as selling drugs on campus. When students and adults use technology that could compromise an innocent victim the violator should be punished under the same rules as a drug dealer. What happened at Hagerty High School? Last week’s blog discussed the innovative idea where students should have academic integrity, honor and integrity was emphasized and negative posters were replaced with positive student encouragements. Bravo to the Hagerty administration and their staff. Perhaps it’s time we reinforce the idea of personal integrity among the teachers and staff.