Teachers In Spotlight After Anti-War Statement

Discussion in 'Education' started by masquerade, Jun 15, 2010.

  1. masquerade
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    masquerade positivity

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    SOUTH YARMOUTH — Dennis-Yarmouth Regional High School teacher Marybeth Verani and an unidentified colleague left school Monday after their behavior at Friday’s senior assembly outraged the school at large.

    For the fifth consecutive year, school resource officer Nick Pasquarosa recognized those seniors who had enlisted in the military. “While Nick was speaking, one faculty member held up a sign saying “End war” and another female teacher stood beside her,” said Assistant Principal Ann Knell. “The two faculty members sat down and did not clap during a school-wide standing ovation for those students.”

    Knell said that during lunch that day, students wrote messages supporting the six seniors entering the military on the T-shirts they were wearing. “This is certainly inviting discussion. Many students were shocked and hurt, and all sorts of emotions came out.”

    When Knell arrived at school Monday morning, three students dressed in “quasi-military clothing waving American flags” were standing out in front. “They came early to be there when everyone arrived, then came inside when it was time for homeroom,” she said.

    While Principal Ken Jenks wouldn’t say Monday whether the teachers were in school, a faculty member who asked to remain anonymous said they had come and gone. “Some said the teachers were sitting because they are against the war, not opposing the students,” Jenks said. “Clearly, many were offended by what happened. We didn’t know it would happen, and we do not condone it.

    Jenks said he is reviewing the situation. “I believe in due process,” he said. “I don’t support what those teachers did. That was neither the time nor the place for this kind of dialogue. As a school, we support our students who are entering the military. Nine hundred and fifty people in that room were giving thunderous applause and universally standing, genuinely respecting those students’ decision.”

    While large numbers of students have displayed their disapproval of the teachers’ behavior, they’ve done it quietly. “They feel it was very disrespectful,” Jenks said. “They said [that assembly] was a time to recognize students who enlisted, not the time to disagree with things. The teachers said they were trying to create a dialogue. Their actions are clearly controversial, and we’ll address that.”

    Pasquarosa said the two teachers chose the wrong venue to express their anti-war sentiment. “It wasn’t a pro-war event, and students are upset because it was rude and disrespectful,” he said. “In certain quarters, outrage is continuing, and large numbers are wearing ‘Support our troops’ and ‘Sheepdogs 2010’ T-shirts today.”

    Sheepdogs?

    “Every year I refer to the students enlisted in the military as ‘sheepdogs’ when I bestow their plaques,” Pasquarosa said. “It’s an old story I picked up from Lt. Col. Dave Grossman, a retired Army ranger who taught at West Point. A large percentage of the human population are sheep, not inclined to harm each other on purpose. One percent are wolves, who deliberately use violence against others. One percent—the sheepdogs— use violence to protect the sheep. Sheep aren’t fond of the sheepdog because it shares characteristics, like sharp teeth, with the wolf. But everybody loves the sheepdog when the wolf is around.”

    Referring to the two teachers’ behavior, Pasquarosa said, “It’s really too bad. This was not a philosophical or political discussion. We were recognizing the choice of six members of the senior class to serve their country. I don’t know of another high school anywhere that does this.”

    Teachers in spotlight after anti-war statement
     
  2. bodecea
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    bodecea Diamond Member

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    I agree with the principle....neither the time nor the place. Apparently those teachers never learned the lessons of Viet Nam. Honor the soldier, protest the policies. And I'm glad to see the kids picked up on what was THE RIGHT THING TO DO. :clap2::clap2::clap2:
     
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  3. masquerade
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    masquerade positivity

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    There's a time and a place for everything. This senior assembly was neither.
    Take your sign and protest to the office of your local congressman, or to the gate of the WH.
     

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