Utah Teacher Fired After Showing Students Art

Discussion in 'General Education' started by AlwaysAttend, Dec 30, 2017.

  1. AmyMyNamey

    AmyMyNamey Comrade

    Joined:
    Sep 10, 2010
    Messages:
    477
    Likes Received:
    330

    Jan 1, 2018

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-5221729/Utah-teacher-fired-students-nudity-art.html

    I found the article to be a painful reminder of how backwards, hypocritical, and small-minded Americans tend to be.

    The same little angels who make soft porn musical.ly videos will affect shock and trauma if it gains them attention, and their absentee parents will make priggish demands for "justice" if doing so gains them a sense of power over their betters.

    I know the players involved. I've seen their ilk a thousand times.

    I hope the teacher is able to secure a crushing, massive payout by way of his lawsuit.
     
    Last edited: Jan 1, 2018
    Peregrin5, anon55 and AlwaysAttend like this.
  2. Backroads

    Backroads Fanatic

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2010
    Messages:
    2,878
    Likes Received:
    1,302

    Jan 1, 2018

    As a Utahn who used to live near this area and am still with an hour's drive of this town, trust me, all online news comments are completely on the teacher's side and find the whole matter ridicilous. Also wondering why the librarian didn't check the procured materials.
     
    AlwaysAttend likes this.
  3. futuremathsprof

    futuremathsprof Enthusiast

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2014
    Messages:
    2,366
    Likes Received:
    648

    Jan 1, 2018

    At my school you can write up students in between classes. That’s where the majority of my write-ups occur. For example, I’m walking along and I hear from a male student “Hey futuremathsprof, those pants look REALLY good on you in all the right places” and then he waggles his eyebrows... I’ve also had to write up another student up for flicking my nipple suggestively twice.

    Yeah, I’m not going to let that kind of moronic nonsense fly.
     
    AlwaysAttend likes this.
  4. AmyMyNamey

    AmyMyNamey Comrade

    Joined:
    Sep 10, 2010
    Messages:
    477
    Likes Received:
    330

    Jan 1, 2018

    There was nothing wrong with the images, and everything wrong with the negative reactions to fine art of historic consequence.

    Shredding them is akin to dancing around a bonfire on the front yard like savages. Right up there with book and witch burners
     
    AlwaysAttend likes this.
  5. vickilyn

    vickilyn Virtuoso

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2014
    Messages:
    7,561
    Likes Received:
    1,839

    Jan 1, 2018

    OK, I work with troubled teens, and they are graffiti experts, but if I showed those pictures to them, my job would be on the line. And if I had been shown those images at grade 6, I would have felt uncomfortable. The one pose is meant to look beguiling and highly suggestive, and it is. The other is just a little too much whole body for that grade level, IMO. These are not nude statues, cold white marble, lacking skin tone, obvious hair color, and flushed cheeks. As far as shredding the images, I think that in the moment, it was pure desperation, to make them less liable, although since they bought them, that ship has sailed. The art teacher will get his day in court.
     
    Last edited: Jan 1, 2018
    Backroads likes this.
  6. TrademarkTer

    TrademarkTer Groupie

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2017
    Messages:
    1,204
    Likes Received:
    825

    Jan 1, 2018

    I agree. I didn't realize you were being sexually harassed. In many ways, those offenders should be treated in the same way as the chair-throwers from the other thread.
     
    futuremathsprof likes this.
  7. vickilyn

    vickilyn Virtuoso

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2014
    Messages:
    7,561
    Likes Received:
    1,839

    Jan 1, 2018

    And in the right environment, they are.
     
    futuremathsprof likes this.
  8. AlwaysAttend

    AlwaysAttend Fanatic

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2012
    Messages:
    2,855
    Likes Received:
    623

    Jan 1, 2018

    I wonder if they would want the Washington Monument pulled down because it looks phallic.
     
  9. vickilyn

    vickilyn Virtuoso

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2014
    Messages:
    7,561
    Likes Received:
    1,839

    Jan 1, 2018

    Fine art of historic consequence has a proper audience and preparation of what one is looking at and the significance. Not sure these elementary school students got that preparation or explanation. The shredding, though, is simply a knee jerk reaction to potential law suits.
     
    AmyMyNamey likes this.
  10. anon55

    anon55 Comrade

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2014
    Messages:
    463
    Likes Received:
    146

    Jan 1, 2018

    I'm a history teacher and I teach the Renaissance, so of course I have to show some nude or semi-nude paintings and sculptures (also from the Greek and Roman eras). I do not find anything wrong with what the teacher did here. If you teach art to upper elementary / middle schoolers; there will be some nudity in that classical art. I find it absurd. This reminds me of the Simpsons episode when Maude Flanders tries to get Michaelangelo's David banned (http://simpsons.wikia.com/wiki/Itchy_&_Scratchy_&_Marge/Quotes) or when Attorney General John Ashcroft tried to cover up the nude sculpture behind him (http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/wor...3108/Curtains-for-nude-statue-of-justice.html). America is in trouble if this backwards anti-intellectual thinking prevails.
     
  11. AlwaysAttend

    AlwaysAttend Fanatic

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2012
    Messages:
    2,855
    Likes Received:
    623

    Jan 1, 2018

    Even in Utah, I do not think they could win a lawsuit.
     
  12. Guitart

    Guitart Rookie

    Joined:
    Nov 16, 2014
    Messages:
    82
    Likes Received:
    26

    Jan 1, 2018

    One thing is cool - I had no idea Kylo Ren was an art teacher:)

    As an elementary art teacher this news bothers me. The internet makes this paranoia easily available to my small, rural district. All it takes is one parent to get the community "Footloose".

    I have 2 versions of art history books in my classroom. Neither are "perfect" if you live in a community that considers the Inquisition as a sensible act of cleansing. I have these old "Art for Children" series books :
    http://www.valerieslivinglibrary.com/artfor.htm
    I know the Michelangelo book sometimes gets giggles. Sadly, the Madonna and Child sculpture is usually the image. When I catch students sharing images and behaving this way I remind them that the artist did not intend for his work to be funny, naughty, or inappropriate. I also tell them we were all born not wearing any clothes and it was not a funny, naughty, or inappropriate. My teachable moment always silences the crowd. I brought home the Matisse book and the last page has a nude sculpture.

    The books that are more popular and modern, which I have a few, are these:
    https://gettingtoknow.com/
    The Mary Cassatt book contains gentle mother and child paintings, the kind you would see in a pediatricians office, but some images are barely clothed or naked children. The cover of the Botticelli book is.. well see for yourself.

    I hope this response by parents/communities does not spread. Regardless, I feel like I need to go back to school and discuss with my P.
     
    anon55 and AlwaysAttend like this.
  13. JimG

    JimG Companion

    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2017
    Messages:
    198
    Likes Received:
    79

    Jan 1, 2018

    Maybe I am just dense when it comes to art; for those arguing that the painting is not inappropriate, what is the educational value of sixth graders looking at a picture of a naked person lying in bed? If a similar, actual photograph was portrayed today, would it not be classified as erotica?
     
  14. AlwaysAttend

    AlwaysAttend Fanatic

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2012
    Messages:
    2,855
    Likes Received:
    623

    Jan 1, 2018

    Without proper context, anything could be inappropriate.

    I’m not an art teacher, so I can’t speak to the context of the lesson itself.

    If I was teaching a lesson based around a series of paintings where one happened to have nudity, I’d make sure there was a valid reason. Let’s say I was teaching women’s suffrage. While we beat kids over the head with, “women couldn’t vote”, do we speak to the inferiority showed toward women during that time? Let’s say the paintings were being displayed in order to determine womens place in society during that time. I could easily imagine one being a naked woman holding a child. If you just showed a Rockwell painting, it wouldn’t exactly tell the whole story. Would this not help shape student understanding?

    What about people in tribal civilizations? Should we invent clothing for them to wear when discussing mayan and aztec civilizations?

    The context of this is that the teacher never meant to include it. It was a mistake.
     
  15. JimG

    JimG Companion

    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2017
    Messages:
    198
    Likes Received:
    79

    Jan 1, 2018

    The examples you mentioned would not be considered erotica. A naked person lying in bed with their rump in the air would be. To clarify, I am not arguing that it was a mistake; it clearly was.
     
    AlwaysAttend and Backroads like this.
  16. Backroads

    Backroads Fanatic

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2010
    Messages:
    2,878
    Likes Received:
    1,302

    Jan 1, 2018

    Our point is if the materials were a problem, why did the school approve them by allowing them to be purchased?
     
  17. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2007
    Messages:
    14,482
    Likes Received:
    2,497

    Jan 1, 2018

    The librarian's job is not to censor materials. If it was otherwise school appropriate, then a bit of classical art canon with a little nudity is probably okay for a school library.

    When it comes to art, sometimes you just can't get around nudity. The Venus of Milos and the David are tremendously important and well-known sculptures with apparent nudity. Do we not teach about those things because we're afraid of some marble nipples?
     
  18. Backroads

    Backroads Fanatic

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2010
    Messages:
    2,878
    Likes Received:
    1,302

    Jan 1, 2018

    It has nothing to do with censorship. It's about the madness of punishing a teacher for the actions of the school as whole. The school chose to purchase the cards-- the district looks like idiots firing one teacher.

    Own the materials or not. The general view from our area is just be consistent.
     
    AlwaysAttend likes this.
  19. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2007
    Messages:
    14,482
    Likes Received:
    2,497

    Jan 1, 2018

    I agree, but I can also see the other side of the argument. Items available for self-selection in a library have a lot more freedom to be controversial in some way than items that are presented to a captive audience in a classroom. My school library has one particular book on the shelves that the ELA department is not permitted to read as a class novel. I don't agree with that policy in regards to that particular book, but I understand it in a broader sense. Not all books have the same literary or informational merit or purpose, so they don't all necessarily belong in a classroom setting as an instructional resource.
     
    Backroads and AlwaysAttend like this.
  20. Backroads

    Backroads Fanatic

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2010
    Messages:
    2,878
    Likes Received:
    1,302

    Jan 1, 2018

    A good perspective, but keep in mind the average population might not see it that way. We are just wondering why a teacher is fired over school library materials.
     

Share This Page

Members Online Now

  1. Teacher234,
  2. MissScrimmage,
  3. ally06,
  4. TrademarkTer
Total: 376 (members: 5, guests: 337, robots: 34)
test