Teachers rights vs Student rights vs Administration

We have recently had a controversy spring up in one of the local high schools here in my area. For more information, you can read here. There’s also the entire sound clip in the related links.
Now, I do sort of question the class in which this took place, but there is no sociology course offered. So unfortunately, the default class with which to talk about current local and world politics/social events is a class like Geography or one of the other less strict social studies classes. Since in the geography class they study the why of how geography is set up, therefore having to reference a lot of social repercussions of events and international workings that help define countries.

Countries such as Ukraine, Slovakia, and Bosnia are countries that were born of political and social circumstances. The direct impact of sociology upon geography has turned this class into the default place for all sociological learning in most high schools.

Now, this teacher used his classroom to talk about a lot of the current hot issues. His latest sound clip reveals him presenting an argument from a definitely more liberal framework. However, one student brought an MP3 player (which has recording capability) to class and taped approx. 1/3 of the class session.

The sound clip made it’s way to one of the local news stations and was broadcast and a news story done. The teacher has been suspended for not presenting both sides of the argument. However, in the sound clip he says that he is just trying to create some critical thinking skills on their part. This may or may not be the case. Only he knows for sure, but past and current students have said that they enjoyed his class and how he challenged them to think for themselves.

But the big question that arises in my mind is this: if he had taken the position in his argument of defending the current American political policy, would this even be an issue?

One of my BA’s is in Political Science, and I had a class called The American Presidency that forever changed my perspective on politics. The idea was that the president does not count as a leader in any significant way, because he is riding “waves” of events that may have started decades or maybe even hundreds of years ago. Additionally, there is a whole social machine moving things and maybe, if he’s lucky, some idea by someone in his administration can nudges the machine in a fractionally different direction, maybe.

So, I consider Bush bashing (or whomever) to be a form of childishly simplistic thinking. If it’s something that has to do with direct corruption, like bribery or inside business deals, then that’s different. The macro political issues though are like blaming Bush for Katrina.

I think that a person qualified to teach civics should know what I mentioned and realize that they aren’t teaching political activism, but an overall dispassionate view of world systems. In fact, it was common in my day that Political Scientists weren’t even supposed to vote; the idea was that you cannot study politics if you’re cheering for a certain side.

Now, if the teacher was trying to illustrate to the class the mind of the activist and planned on presenting both sides of the issue, then he should be supported. However, my assumption is that the kid in class that reported the incident must have felt preached to and so that gives a clue about the teacher’s motives.

It’s unethical to present propaganda to students, but propaganda has become a major part of the way we are taught via the media, and so I think that the teacher ought to be given a second chance, with a refresher course on how to present challenging info in a fair and balanced way (ha, ha).

To answer the final question, I doubt that he would have gotten in trouble if he supported in admin, but that’s not the point, because his behavior would still have been unfair to the students.

Who taught your High School Civics class? Mine was taught by the basketball coach.

Hey that’s funny, but I had a great teacher in high school, and in fact for a public school these guys were really motivated. Many classes as I recall, were much harder than college courses.

Meanwhile, I amazed that this topic didn’t create any interest.

Mine is the wrestling coach.

High school civics class? We didn’t even have this at my school. Not properly anyway.

mine was taught by the honda repair man



for me, yes, yes it would be

Yes, but we’re not talking about you. Respectfully, this man’s career is on the line due to this. Whether it matters to you or not is not of consequence, unless you start the ball rolling to get him removed from his position.

Would there still be a public fervor over a Pro-Bush statement?

I think we all know that the answer to that question is directly, “no”. It is the fact that he questioned the current regime that has jeopardized his position.

Of course this issue is not strictly limited to Teacher, student, administration, speaking from the experience of knowing what my mother has gone through as an educator.

The government has become far too involved in the parenting process, many have given up, and decided that it is the schools mission to raise their child/children … teachers are now forced to teach “character classes” as part of Bush’s “No Child Left Behind” program.

The highest governing organization for teachers is the NEA, of which, less than 15% are individuals with an education background, they are mostly liberal legal counsel.

We continually lower the standards for students in this country, and continually raise it for teachers, (a teacher in at least 34 states is expected to achieve a masters, or already have one, and the compensation for that is generally three to five thousand per year).

Does anyone really wonder why this particular educator is pissed at the administration? I’m not. It would seem expected. Although I wouldn’t necessarily agree that a school classroom is the correct venue for political grievances, it’s understandable. More to the point, if parents were doing their job, which is definitely education of their own children, and as I have done a number times, correcting misinformation from teachers, it would be a moot discussion.

Students have no “rights”. Children have two tasks set before them: Follow the rules of applicable adults, complete their studies to the best of their abilities. There is something wrong with a society that puts more stock in the opinions of juveniles, than it’s elders. Period.

LOL, ever notice how all the Social Studies teacher’s first name is Coach. A very competative field, and they are often forced into coaching to obtain employment. I said “tain’t no way suckers” and now have two BA’s in English and History and an MA in English.

Yes, they do not have enough knowledge, a base from which to form sound judgements.

With regards,


Who taught your High School Civics class? Mine was taught by the basketball coach."

IMP: “mine was taught by the honda repair man”

K: Ah, this explains a lot about your political views.
I actually had a real teacher for civics and
a real teacher in collage. If you had a real teacher,
you might have learned some real facts about civics. :slight_smile: