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Thursday, February 10, 2011

 

Teacher Removed After Blogging About Students

The year-old post circulated through the student body on Tuesday

 

Sarah Larson

Doylestown Patch 

February 9, 2011

CB East Teacher Removed After Blogging About Students

 

A Central Bucks East High School English teacher has been removed from the school after a controversial blog post from a year ago enraged her current and former students and parents on Tuesday.

Natalie Munroe, who has been at Central Bucks East since 2006, teaches English.

CB East principal Abram Lucabaugh said Wednesday morning that he and the district administrators found out about the post this morning.

We were made aware of the situation this morning, Lucabaugh said. I have removed the teacher from the school. The matter is currently under investigation.

Lucabaugh referred questions about policies for teachers and staff about online behavior to the school district.

Central Bucks School District spokeswoman Carol Counihan said Munroe has been suspended pending the investigation.

As to whether Central Bucks has a written or even verbal policy for staff and faculty on what they should or shouldn't say online, Counihan said that is part of the investigation.

"I'm sure that's part of what they'll be looking at as this unfolds," she said Wednesday.

Munroe is pregnant and had been set to go out for maternity leave, according to students and parents who know her.

What She Wrote

The debate centers over a post Munroe wrote on her blog just over a year ago. Entitled, If You Dont Have Anything Nice to Say it outlined the things she wished she could really say to parents about her students performance and personalities.

They include:

It ends with, Thus, the old adageif you dont have anything nice to saysay 'cooperative in class.'"

For a year, the only response to the post was a These are effing awesome boost from someone, presumably a friend.

But the next response reveals the danger of the Internet, where everything ever written can be seen by all.

Jokes on you because this link is being cycled throughout the students of CB East via facebook. Have fun applying for unemployment. Sincerely, cooperative in class. was posted at 5:54 p.m. on Tuesday night.

From there, word of Munroes blog spread via Facebook and Twitter.

On the Internet, Nothing is Ever Gone

The blog had been taken down early Wednesday morning, but in the age of the Internet, nothing is truly gone.

Printouts of the blog as it read late Tuesday night document the exchange, as do screenshots of the blog post and the scathing responses from people who identified themselves as Munroes current or former students.

Here are some excerpts, unedited except to remove an unprintable word:

Well..good luck getting a job as a teacher anywhere else. If youre in a school district as prestigious as CB East, you should act like it and stop blubbering to people who couldnt care less about your life. Just because you hate your job, doesnt make it okay to whine about it on the internet.

You have cheated, screwed and under-cut every single one of your students this year. And I speak for everyone when I say you were a douche to all of your students in class and made no effort to help any of us achieve our academic goals. Maybe you should learn to teach and be compassionate with your students. Respect goes a long way, and the only way people will respect you is if you respect them (too late). Have a nice life. Good luck with the inner-city hole they call a school in philly.

Im not sure if you remember me, but you were by far the worst teacher Ive ever had because you were simply a (unprintable word)I also heard that this little stunt is getting your fired, and to all the students and parents that youve pissed off over the years, Im going to take this opportunity to say good riddance!

Real Classy Ms. Munroe. I just have to say that I am very disappointed by this. I originally didnt completely loath you like the rest of the junior class, but now my feelings have changed.Also, how could you not have even thought to delete this? The worst of the posts are from a year ago, why didnt you delete them? Its understandable to want to talk about your day at work, but the internet, seriously?

Im just glad I had Hendrickson and Rosini my first couple years at East, I couldnt stand the thought of someone like you secretly bashing me and my classmates. Shame on you.

Hit the screenshot button so many times, its borderline rape.

As a former student of yours, I am so happy to see you mess up this bad. I pray and hope you get fired for this. The reason that you encounter any of these problems is because you are simply the most hated teacher in the schoolI hope that you never return from maternity leave, things do not get better, and that you enjoy working for your local trash company.

Mixing Social Media and Work

Other area teachers - some in Central Bucks, some not - say they have been encouraged by their principals to avoid using social media altogether.

Some say they've been discouraged, though not actually forbidden, from creating their own personal Facebook pages. Part of the concern isn't just about what the teachers might say; it's also about whether their students would try to "friend" them online, and the fallout from that, they say.

Many educational professional development groups encourage teachers to use social media to interact with and encourage students, as well as to make the learning environment interesting.

But nearly all come with the advice to watch what you say and do online.

"As a teacher, you are viewed as a leader and role model for your students," advises a list of teacher dos and don'ts. " You need to be careful to keep your personal and professional life separate, not crossing the line that separates using social media inappropriately for student-learning purposes. 

"It is also extremely important to always make sure that the content posted will not lead to you or your students getting in trouble or casting a negative representation of your school establishment."

 

LINK TO ON-LINE POST AND PHOTO OF TEACHER:

http://doylestown.patch.com/articles/cb-east-teacher-removed-after-blogging-about-students


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