Friday, April 13, 2007

What Happened in the Principal's Office....Now on DVD

I've been accused of being cynical when it comes to public education, and I can't deny it. My own public school experience, combined with the news reports coming out of schools today, has made me that way.

Today's big news story here in Chicago is a good example of why I feel the way I do. The principal of a suburban Chicago elementary school fools around with a female teacher and (on another occasion) a female teacher's aide in his office. How do we know this? Someone hid a camera in his office and caught two hours' worth of the trysts on video (said video is now all over the Internet). Then the video was transferred to DVD's, which were mailed to the parents of the school's students.

The principal, the teacher and the teacher's aide have resigned, and the school district authorities are outraged...though not only for the reason one might think. Suspicious about the timing of the release of the DVDs (a week before the school board election), the school district's attorney "said whoever released this video should have notified the superintendent first so this could be handled."

See what I mean? The concern is for how the video got out, not just for the misbehavior of these "educators" and how it may have affected the students in the school.

Those students' parents say the kids were already aware of these high-jinks, and that's not surprising. Kids aren't stupid. When I was in seventh grade, our junior high sent us on a three-day trip to a camp. One night we heard noises outside. We ran to the cabin window expecting to see a bear or something (not likely in the suburbs of Illinois!), but instead we saw our principal kissing our pretty blonde math teacher goodnight....for quite a while...near a tall post with a light attached to it. We thought it was funny, but I wonder how many of our parents believed us (until the next year, when the principal divorced his wife and married the math teacher.)

Bottom line: news stories like this confirm the worst suspicions of those of us who are already cynical about public education. Add this to the ever-growing list of reasons why homeschooling is the way to go.

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