David Eubanks: Has one educator mixed personal judgement and moral mores for facts?
It seems Interim superintendent of the Union Schools District, South Carolina, David Eubanks has no intention of conceding that he may have after all got it all wrong as the educator has now doubled down, after releasing a statement asserting (once again) that Union High school teacher, Leigh Anne Arthur is lying to the media while continuing to blame her for her own demise.
The man’s statement comes after the 16 year old student in the center of a fiasco which saw Arthur’s private (risqué) images being widely disseminated behind her back to the student body being charged by authorities on Friday.
Charged with violating the state’s computer crime act along with aggravated voyeurism and facing the possibility of a maximum fine of $10,500 and four years in prison, the actions against the teen were the first time the student faced any consequences for his illicit actions.
To date, the school district has declined to discipline the student after he obtained access to the teacher’s cellphone, going on to share risqué images on the teacher’s phone, images that the woman teacher had no intention of ever sharing with the public at large.
While commentators on the web have accepted that Leigh Anne Arthur may have used bad judgement in leaving her phone unattended when she left a classroom unattended for a duration of four minutes, commentators have unanimously supported the view that the teacher’s right to privacy had been violated and that she shouldn’t have been given the ultimatum of either accept being fired or forced to resign.
The decision to remove the teacher from the school came after David Eubanks earlier in the week insisted that while the teacher’s privacy may have been violated she was at fault by bringing said images on her phone to school and thus creating moral turpitude and aggravating the delinquency of a minor.
Told David Eubanks in a statement after the delinquent student’s arrest yesterday: ‘It is my understanding that one student has been charged with the crime of transmitting pornographic material using electronic media. The exact charges have not been provided to the school district by local police who have been involved with this incident from the start. The student will now also face possible expulsion from the school District.
‘It is truly unfortunate that a teacher charged with proper supervision and care of students failed to fulfill that responsibility in her classroom. Evidence indicates that Leigh Anne Arthur was not in her assigned position at the time of the incident. Evidence also indicates that she allowed students to use her personal cell phone on a regular and routine basis. Evidence also indicates that the phone was routinely left on her desk for student use and was never locked.
‘Ms. Arthur has used the media to transmit false information obviously intended for the purpose of deflecting the incident totally to students. The evidence available, points to the extent of her false statements.
‘Her failure to supervise her students along with allowing students routine access to her personal cell phone constitute an evident unfitness for Ms. Arthur to continue as a classroom teacher. We are not aware of charges that may be filed against Ms. Arthur. We do know that her failure to properly supervise students entrusted to her care will negatively impact the lives of students and their parents.’
While many have since called for the school to suspend/censor the student, David Eubanks has in fact done nothing of the sort, as the student is understood to remain an active school participant. A point of action which comprises the notion that ill behaving students ought to always be held accountable for their actions.
A lack of action which parallels David Eubanks’ view that Leigh Anne Arthur in essence deserved everything that has since happened to her for lacking the foresight to know that as a woman, while she may have a private life at home, any mention or revelation of said private life, especially if it involves the exposure of risqué image is not to be tolerated, permitted or encouraged.
Raising the question since when does what a teacher do in the privacy of her own home or outside of work ever compromise her or his ability to provide a solid education? Or to put it bluntly, are teachers to be held to a higher moral standard where revelations of any actions, behavior, images, even outside of school hours can never be condoned?
Can we not argue that perhaps educators this time round have got it all wrong and if so, instead of doubling down, shouldn’t they just concede as such and realize that sometimes the actions, choices of teaching personnel is theirs to make alone and not at the discretion and judgement of society….