Tuesday, August 13, 2013

More Vital Info on the Perfidy of Teachers

Today's Rise and Shine at Gotham led me to yet another hard-hitting education story from the Daily News. Apparently, some website that hooks up young women with "sugar daddies" claims to have attracted 472 teachers since last year. Naturally the claim is not verified. As I learned from the rash of Campbell Brown stories, one may call teachers "pervs," "sex creeps," and various other epithets with no investigation whatsoever. I suppose making open proclamations about their dating habits is not even questionable. With regard to teachers, that's a thing now.

As far as I know, it's legal for women to seek out wealthy suitors, but the story didn't mention that. Perhaps the important aspects of modern professional education reporting include not only reporting every sensational or embarrassing claim anyone makes about teachers, but also failing to explain why it's of any importance to us.

I always advise teachers to be careful what they post on social media. Imagine your principal, your students, the mayor, and your grandmother are reading, I say. I'd have supposed dating services would wish to remain confidential, but there I'm clearly mistaken. Who on earth would patronize a dating service that shared profiles and spoke openly about them with the Daily News? I don't suppose the women who used this service expected this to happen. Of course, now that it's open season on teachers, they will need to adjust their expectations accordingly.

Then we come to the inevitable implication of this piece. Are women who allegedly patronize this dating service fit to be teachers? What about women who patronize other dating services but don't actually announce their desire to meet wealthy men? What about men who want to meet wealthy women? Would it make a difference if they publicly admitted it, or would they be better human beings if they wanted this to remain private? And why didn't this timely story go into depth on these important questions?

Actually, as long as teachers aren't bringing their dating habits into their classrooms, we can only judge their fitness by what actually happens in said classrooms. (Of course now, in our zeal to fire teachers, we'll do so on the basis of junk science and test scores.) Sometimes I get the wacky notion that even teachers are entitled to private lives. I'm generally grateful to not know about people's private lives, which are none of my business.  I wonder what other jobs the women who supposedly use this service are?

I wonder why it isn't news that women with other jobs are not subject to public ridicule. Isn't that really the question? And if teachers are subject to a higher standard from those who produce and promote such nonsense, isn't that discrimination? Why are our private lives so much more important than those of other people? And why on earth are they news stories?
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