As a mom, there are very few things I wouldn’t do to protect my son. Of course, I consider myself to be more on the “Free Range” side of the fence, so my idea of “protection” falls more within the ‘teach him to take care of himself’ realm… he is in Tae Kwon Do, for example. He can cook a meal for himself. He walks home from the bus almost every day. We role-play situations with him. Stuff like that.
I also know that there are parents out there who lean more toward the “helicopter” side of the fence. Parents who are uncomfortable, for example, allowing their 8 year old to walk to or from school, who won’t allow them to stay overnight at a friend’s house for fear of molestation, things like that.
I understand their fears, and while I don’t share them, I try not to judge them for it.
But I was absolutely shocked when I read this story out of California. According to the story, two teachers were arrested for nasty, disgusting acts against students. Listening to the radio today, another is being questioned for aiding and abetting.
Make no mistake, I believe that, if those three teachers are guilty, they need to be placed under the school. There is no dungeon deep enough, no dungeon master evil enough to deal with them. However… the way the school board is dealing with the rest of the staff is appalling.
They have decided (and this is coming not from the cited article, but from news reports coming out of a Los Angeles radio station, KFI AM640, which I listen to through I *heart* Radio. LOVE that site) to “reassign” every single teacher in that school. School has been out for two or three days, while the school board essentially fired every staff member in the school (‘scuse me, “reassigned”), and replaced them with an entirely new staff.
School resumed today with the new staff and counselors to help the children with the transition. The cost, reported on the radio today, is somewhere in the neighborhood of $5m. The Teacher’s Union, expectedly, is completely up in arms over this.
How is this right??? I get that they want the kids protected, but really? Three teachers are dirtbags, so they get rid of the entire staff??? And at that cost – when schools across the country are constantly complaining that they have no money – how can they justify any of these actions?
I cannot imagine how traumatic the molestation was for the student body. But then to dismiss all the rest of the teachers? Some of who, I’m sure, were much-loved and certainly no threat to anyone. Seems to me that they are adding trauma on top of trauma.
I can’t imagine what this will do to the teacher’s reputation, either. Thanks to this sweeping act, they are now and forevermore tied to the evil three who caused all the trouble. This is the worst case of Zero Tolerance I’ve seen.
An updated story appears here. It appears that the teachers/staff has been permanently reassigned to another school, which will be opening in the fall. That’s better than firing them, but I still don’t think it’s right. How ’bout you?