Dear Teacher, Stop Texting My Daughter

Rant 22

textingIn news that is sadly becoming "not news at all," another teacher has been fired for inappropriate behavior with a teenage student. But how's this for a twist? Arthur "Chuck" Matthews is suing Philadelphia area private school Springside Chestnut Hill Academy for discrimination over his texting relationship with a student.

He's using as proof the fact that the girl's parents have said that there was nothing improper about the texts exchanged by Matthews and the young girl. But is it ever really proper for a teacher to be texting a student?

I recognize that kids today are living in a digital world. Their gadgets are often their main means for communicating. And yet, as a mom, I'm wary of adults I don't know well interacting with my kid.

Teachers working with them inside a classroom is one thing. It's a controlled environment where the presence of other kids helps to keep things grounded. At the very least, a teacher who is thinking about stepping over the lines with a student has to be on their toes because they never know when another kid or another teacher is going to pop in and catch them in the act.

Jump to texts, and the threat of being watched is less. So what are they saying in those texts? For that matter, what could they possibly have to say in a text that couldn't be covered in the classroom?

And why would a teacher need a child's personal phone number? Call me old school, but I tend to shield my cellphone number from people who don't absolutely need to have it. It seems overly familiar to share it with people beyond that because it gives people access to me anywhere, anytime.

I know I don't want a teacher accessing my kid anywhere, anytime. That's for sure!

Do you think it's appropriate for teachers to text kids?

 

Image via kamshots/Flickr

safety, school