Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Protitutes teaching our children?

A New York elementary school art teacher is writing a memoir about her time as a stripper and sex worker in Mexico when she was 19 years old and for about a year (ending in January 2007) she advertised as a hooker on Craigslist.  She was 'outed' after someone videotaped her reading a portion of her memoir at an open-mic event.

Some parents are up in arms about a former prostitute teaching their children.  And Melissa Petro is currently on administative leave pending an investigation by the school authorities.

Should the background of a teacher be considered for suitability for teaching children?  Of course.  No one would think that a sex-offender should be an elementary school teacher?  But what about a previous sex-worker?  What if the teacher used to smoke marijuana?  Or if they were convicted of drunk driving 10 years ago?

Everyone has some past indescretion that they probably would prefer to forget.  Small or large, few of us have gone thru our younger years (high school or college) without doing something we think better of later.  Or maybe some don't.  Just because Melissa is no longer a sex worker, doesn't mean she would do things different now.  But how does this affect the children she teaches?

Unless Melissa is espousing her beliefs that all young people should become involved in the sex trade in some aspect, what's wrong with her teaching art to students?  Where is the line that connects the two items that precludes one from the other?

If someone is currently an avid mountain-biker and teaches math to elementary students, where is the harm?  If the person tells their students they need to get a mountain-bike and speed down converted ski-slopes, then there could be an issue.  They are in the classroom to teach math.  Telling students to go and do something potentially harmful could be an issue that the school should handle.  They ask the teacher not to bring up the subject.  And if they do, the teacher is disciplined.

So, whether I like or dislike what Melissa has done in the past and however she feels about it now, as long as she isn't bringing this into the classroom, where's the harm?
Bronx art teacher Melissa Petro blabs about exploits as stripper, hooker at open-mic events (NY Daily News)

No comments:

Post a Comment