This story comes from Fox News.
While the overwhelming majority of schoolteachers work hard, and have honorable character, some bad apples occasionally slip into the system. In this latest case from Ohio, a 4th grade teacher has been charged with prostitution after allegedly using a school computer to arrange an afternoon tryst at a motel. She apparently skipped class to go to the motel.
In a system that rewards seniority before qualifications or results, we know that the teacher, 35 year old Amber Carter, is a 13 year veteran of Bellafontaine City Schools in central Ohio. We also know that she has never received a reprimand before this incident.
Several years ago, I had a conversation with an admissions officer for the Education department at a state run university. She haughtily explained to me that not just anyone could be a school teacher. Explaining further that the shaping of young minds involved skills that could only be learned in “professional” programs such as what this government school taught. Incredibly, she went even further, comparing the educational process of developing children’s brains to the work of a neurosurgeon doing brain surgery!
While I will admit the job of being a schoolteacher requires a unique set of skills, I still think this comparison is a bit over the top. When is the last time we heard of a neurosurgeon being charged with prostitution?
Personally, I am a supporter of public schools. As an advocate of freedom however, I believe parents reserve the right to send children to private schools, or to educate their children in alternative environments such as home schooling. If we let government bureaucrats like the university admissions officer I mentioned run things, we would have a system of government control that forced everyone to send children to a specific school determined by the government. (After all, they have been trained to teach children, while parents have no qualifications to instruct children on anything!)
Going back to the comparison of education to the medical field, I think most Americans would agree that we should be able to choose our own doctor or surgeon. For surgery, we should be able to choose which hospital we want the procedure to be done in. Following that same principle, we should also be able to choose what teachers will be educating our children, and what school we want our children to go to.
If school teachers want to be taken seriously as a “profession” like medical doctors, they have some catching up to do. Traditionally, job fields that are considered “professions” are doctors, lawyers, clergy, military, and education. Of these, only one has a union. It’s not the brain surgery that is unionized. Brain surgeons do not rely on government force to compel patients to come to their office. Who do you have more respect for?