Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Censorship of Teachers: Making Our Children Feel Safe

Each teacher has a few, or in some cases, many peculiarities. One of mine is a statement I make to any student who sits and stares off into space. I get their attention, which sometimes takes considerable effort, and tell them, "Don't just sit there and look handsome/cute. Get to work."

Two girls went to the principal and complained that I was calling them "cute." Guilty as charged. I didn't deny it. When I told the principal the context of the comments, he just rolled his eyes and laughed at the silliness. However, he is not the boss. Lawyers are, and I was told never to say that again. If I do it again, I will be "written up." If you are "written up" three times you have a problem.........teacher probation. Today I told a kid, "Don't just sit there. Get to work." It lacks that little complimentary pizazz, but it's just as ineffective, if not more so.

The principal also mentioned that I had told the girls that I was a handsome devil. Guilty as charged. Also true. When I am explaining math to a student, I want them looking at the math problem, not me. If they keep it up, I tell them, "Quit staring at me. Look at the math problem." If they do it again, I say, "I know I am a handsome devil and it is hard to take your eyes off me, but you must focus on the math. Look at the math problem." Today I merely, said, "Look at the math problem." I had to repeat it two times, but it's as effective.

There are children that have been terrorized and their sexuality severely damaged by predatory adults, and they will be judged not by me, but by the Almighty Creator. I would sacrifice myself to prevent it from happening again to even one child.

I wish that our society would do more to solve this horrible problem than censor teachers for trivialities and control our vocabulary with political correctness.

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