MSNBC: Teacher who called students ‘loathsome,’ ‘rat-like’ is fired

28 06 2012

Ummm… okay. Note to educators, and basically anyone who works anywhere. It’s not a good idea to make blog posts slamming your students/employers/clients/customers. If you loathe the people who you are responsible for serving, you’re in the wrong line of work. And if you’re going to bad mouth them in a public forum, you have no one to blame but yourself when your services are no longer required.

Everyone has had a bad day at the office. Everybody has felt the need to vent their hostility, and it’s always nice to have a friend or colleague or spouse that you can go to and get all of it off your chest. And it’s nice to be able to write an entry in your journal or diary to get it all out. But a blog is not private. It’s not confidential. It isn’t secret. It isn’t safe.

And frankly, if one of my children was one of the “loathesome, rat-like” creatures in her classroom, I’d be ecstatic to find out she was free to pursue other career options.

– dEV

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Natalie Munroe stands by comments in her blog and has filed a lawsuit

By Jillian Eugenios contributor
updated 6/28/2012 10:25:42 AM ET

A Pennsylvania teacher was fired after slamming her students in a blog, but now she’s fighting back, claiming school administrators held her to an unfair standard.

Natalie Munroe, who teaches honors English at Central Bucks East High School in Doylestown, Pa., was in her job for six years. Then last year, she gained national attention for calling her students “utterly loathsome,” “lazy,” and “frightfully dim,” on her blog “Where are we going & why are we in this handbasket.” She also mentioned that her students appeared “rat-like.” The posts quickly went viral.

On Tuesday Munroe was fired, and she alleges the dismissal was backlash for her posts. However, the school says it was Munroe who didn’t make the grade. The school’s board dismissed her following a unanimous 7-0 vote. According to the New York Daily News, Munroe and her lawyer filed suit against the school district last Friday, claiming her right to free speech was violated.

‘Disrespectful and disturbing’ 

Munroe said she isn’t sorry for what she said, because the posts were true and they were meant to be anonymous. She posted under the name “Natalie M.” and didn’t mention the name of the school, students, parents or her colleagues. She did, however, include a real photo of herself.

“The intent of my blog was never to be an exposé on the world,” Munroe said. “It was to get out my feelings like a diary.”

Abe Lucabaugh, the principal at Central Bucks East, said “her comments were unprofessional, disrespectful and disturbing, particularly coming from the heart of an educator.”When students got word of the posts they were stunned. One said, “It really offended a lot of people so I don’t think it’s right for her to really stand by that.”

Natalie Munroe refuses to apologize for the remarks on her blog, saying, “Sometimes the truth hurts.”

After Munroe’s blog was noticed, she was suspended in February of last year. Some called on her to apologize for her posts, which included the words “tactless” and “dunderheads” to describe her students. She also criticized parents in her blog, asking, “Don’t you know how to raise kids?”

When Munroe returned to work last summer, she said she faced a series of unannounced observations in her classroom. In her lawsuit she alleges she was fired in retaliation for her protected free speech.Munroe continues to refuse to offer an apology, saying, “Sometimes the truth hurts.”

(Full Story with Video)




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