Sunday, March 2, 2014

Hey kids, don't be stupid

An honors student in Minnesota, attending Rogers High School, was suspended after tweeting "Actually, yes" in response to a rumor that he had made out with the 28 year old PE teacher.  He is having to move to a different school district  but won't be charged as the police had originally indicated.

I wanted to make a couple comments.  He seems, from the interviews I saw, to be a genuinely nice kid.  I'm sure that he thought he was just kidding around with some friends.  He has issued what appears to be a real apology so I think he is sorry for what he did.  It's too bad that he will have to undergo such upheaval in his life over what he thought was a passing comment.

But here's the part that students need to understand.  He could have completely destroyed that teacher's life.  It isn't a joke for teachers.  If there are rumors about inappropriate conduct between a teacher and a student it can destroy careers and force teachers to leave a school and a town.

Again, I don't think there was any malicious intent on this student's part and I feel a little sorry for him, but students need to figure out sooner rather than later that joking around with your friends in the privacy of your own group is a little different than posting on the internet for everyone to see.

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