In another Facebook lesson for educators, a fifth grade teacher from Harlem is fighting for her job after allegedly posting an insensitive joke on her page. No one found it funny, and now Christine Rubino, a 15-year veteran of the school, is awaiting a hearing to learn her fate.
The "joke" in question came on the heels of the tragic drowning of a 12-year-old girl at a nearby beach. The next day, Rubino posted: "After today, I’m thinking the beach is a good trip for my class. I hate their guts." A Facebook friend then posted, "Wouldn’t you throw a life jacket to little Kwami?" Rubino's reply: "No, I wouldn’t for a million dollars."
Another "friend," who is a teacher at the school, copied the posts and took them to school officials.
It's one thing for a teacher to vent, but this is pretty harsh and insensitive. I think the most bothersome part of the post is her use of the word "hate." Clearly she wasn't planning to drown her class, but her anger toward the children is intense and concerning ... as are a few other details about the case.
While she first admitted that she did the posting "out of pure anger," she later changed her story and said that others had access to her Facebook account. A friend, who doesn't work for the school, later said she wrote the post, which sounds as shady as a forest.
If it had just been the remarks, I might have been able to see giving her the job back after sufficient punishment was handed down and she made the appropriate apologies. Everyone makes mistakes, and if she'd just said the same things over cocktails instead of writing them down on Facebook, no one would have blinked an eye.
It's the thought of a teacher lying about her actions and trying to cover her own ass that -- if proven true (she says it's a witch hunt based on past grievances) -- would make me want to call for her permanent dismissal more than anything else. Someone like that isn't someone who should be teaching our nation's children.
Do you think this teacher should lose her job over the "joke" she posted on Facebook?
Image via codemastersnake/Flickr