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Re: A lesson learned

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Nnaell_at_TeacherArtExchange
Date: Fri May 24 2002 - 03:19:43 PDT


On thing that came to light to me a few days ago...not with regard to this
topic but, related...is the relationships high school teachers build with
their students. A young person I know (it is a family relationship) was
telling me about one of her high school teachers...who is very popular...and
how he pulled her aside..told her how much he liked her..and reveled personal
information...that I will not go into here. She was totally not bothered by
it...but I was. There is a line...that I think sometimes we
forget...especially as students become more able and very interested in our
passion...which happens to be art!

These students are children....even though some of them are huge
children....and there is a boundary. No matter how responsible the student,
I would never let a student have a responsibility that could negatively
affect my job. The buck stops with us as the teacher...as the adult who
makes the decision and controls the environment. Students do not have the
same realization about concequences that adults have.

For instance, one day a teacher in my building came in to the staff room and
was telling us about a student who had fallen asleep during manditory
testing. She said she told the student her job was on the line, made him do
push-ups then had him finish the test. The other staff members who were
standing there, unanimously said, "I would never give him that kind of
power."

So...while I believe the student was wrong to do what he did...and that there
should be severe reprocussions. My question is....should he ever have been
given that kind of power in the first place?

I know the reverse argument is...we have to give students the opportunity to
prove themselves....well...my feeling is..not at the risk of my job.

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