PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — A Mount Lebanon chorus director turned himself in Friday to face charges of sending-sexually explicit texts to a male student for two years, and even beyond graduation.
Last year, a Connellsville math teacher and coach was charged for inappropriate communication with a female student. They allegedly swapped phone numbers over Facebook.
More recently, a Hopewell science teacher was accused of similar allegations.
Online chats and texting are the way many teachers and students communicate legitimately about school work.
But prospective teachers are now being informed about the subject at Pitt’s School of Education.
“One of the things that we have to talk specifically about with them is that you may be working with people in school districts who may not consider that an appropriate way of communicating,” says Dr. Jennifer Cartier, the director of teacher education at the University of Pittsburgh’s School of Education.
They offer an old-fashioned standard about being a role model regardless of today’s technology.
“We tell them that everything you do, pretend that everybody can see everything that you do. So, you go to the grocery store, pretend the parents of your students are there with you,” said Cartier. “You really are kind of putting yourself out there as a role model for kids, and you should be critical of that image that you share with the public.
“So clean out your social media sites,” she adds. “Make sure that everything is very privatized. Never communicate with kids on social media sites. Be very cautious about who you give your personal telephone numbers to.”
Cartier says teachers should also be very aware of the specific policies about social media established by specific school districts.
Mt. Lebanon Teacher Accused Of Sexual Communication Turns Self In (3/8/13)
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