Since when is a teacher desk NOT off limits?

teacher deskI don’t usually choose to rant in a blog, but I can’t help myself today. Have you heard about the teacher in Union County, SC? The 13-year veteran was forced to resign after a 16-year old student took her cell phone off her desk, took pictures of her private pictures, and shared them on social media. The student has had no consequences.

David Eubanks (Superintendent) said that the engineering teacher’s actions may have contributed to the delinquency of a minor as she left the phone unlocked and available to students.  REALLY???  Since when is a teacher’s desk NOT OFF LIMITS?

Teacher desks certainly were off limits when I was a student and during the 30-years that I taught high school. Teachers have all kinds of confidential material on their desks during the day … test keys, student grades, parent correspondence, emotional & physical  reports, etc.. What possessed this child  to approach a teacher’s desk when the teacher wasn’t even sitting there to speak to? And then to steal (yes, I used the “S” word), invade privacy, and share the contents within … come on!! How can this teen not be punished???

I realize that leaving the phone out wasn’t the best decision because teens can do “stupid things”, but this teacher was doing her job by standing at the door, greeting students, and watching the halls during class changes and the phone was on her desk!  (I remember we were “required” to stand in the doorways at my school.) No student should be near a teacher’s desk or touching anything on it without permission. That should be learned in elementary school.

Additionally, cell phones in schools are to be for academic purposes … his actions had nothing to do with academics. When I taught, if a teacher had to take a student’s “phone up” for violation of cell phone policies, we weren’t allowed to look inside at pictures, texts, history, etc. or big trouble would be coming our way. We turned the phone off and turned it into administration. How can there be no enforced consequences for this student when he looked in his teacher’s private phone? Why isn’t he in alternative school or expelled while “investigations” continue?

Unless this teacher was distributing inappropriate pictures to or with students, taking photos on school time, or using work hours to distribute the pictures to her husband, why is she losing her livelihood?

I almost hope there is undisclosed information that comes out to make more sense of what was reported today. Let’s all see …

Make the most of your day!

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