Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Teacher assignment: go investigate internet porn

A teacher gives an assignement to high school freshmen to research porn on the internet. After some parents complain, the superintendent says oops, and the assignment is pulled.

From the Breitbart article: "Superintendent Jeff Lampert said that although the teacher's apparent goal 'to discuss the harmful effects of pornography' was well- intentioned, he agreed with parents that the assignment was inappropriate for 14- and 15-year-old freshmen at Brooklyn High."

Does the superintendent think the assignment would have been OK for juniors or seniors? The superintendent should have said this was wrong, period.

For part of the assignment the students were asked to write about any experience they had with internet porn. The teacher has no business asking students about their personal lives! This is so inappropriate.

The superintendent claimed the assignement was well-intentioned and didn't expect the teacher would be disciplined. Well most of the time when the rest of us do something wrong there are consequences. If the police pull over a man speeding, he normally doesn't get off if he claims his intentions were good. Should teachers not have any consequences when they make a serious mistake?

Superintendent Lampert went on to say: "At this point, I don't see that as an issue, the whole purpose was to discuss a societal ill."

It seems like he doesn't understand how big a deal this is to so many parents. A mature adult is in a much better position to make decisions about sex, drugs, and so on. But most 14 and 15 teenagers are don't have the wisdom to make decisions about porn.

Scott Gioia, the teacher, said he was trying to teach the students the ills of internet porn. Maybe next week he will try to teach students the problems with alcohol and suggest they check out five different bars in town, and sample one drink at each bar.

This is a health class. There are all sorts of reasonable health issues for the teacher to review. He can talk about good foods to eat, the importance of exercise, and to stay away from drugs.

Scott has been teaching for about five years. Maybe he has given this assignment before, and before no parents find out about it. Another reason to homeschool, to make sure your children aren't given destructive assignments.