Editorial: Kylie Lang | The Courieral Mail | I pity the poor person who thinks that teachers dressing up in bawdy or irreverent costumes and simulating degrading acts for a calendar photo shoot is inappropriate.

That person - and anyone else who disagrees that such behaviour is harmless fun - must be a first-class bore. Well, count me in.

Teachers in the state school system are public servants - the public in this case being primarily children.

I cannot fall into line with the woke agenda that sees nothing wrong with male teachers dressing in skimpy sequin costumes and spreading their legs for the camera. Ditto making like a dog and having another teacher in a traditional nun's outfit put a foot on his glittering rear end.

Really? What kind of “education” are you people playing at?

Good on the whistleblower at Balmoral State High for raising the alarm because this sort of nonsense - much like gender-fluidity instruction - has no place in a school.

And make no mistake, the photos in question were not taken in the privacy of a teacher's home or for their own viewing “pleasure”.

They were snapped in the staff room, for a 2023 calendar that was able to be seen by students.

I'm surprised these teachers didn't go further and plaster the riotous images across social media - or were they worried about repercussions?

The government is “looking into the matter” but a spokesperson says the Department of Education “does not comment on individual employee matters as it has a responsibility to maintain the confidentiality of employee information”.

The staff members posing didn't seem to have a confidentiality problem at the time - also exposing faces for the camera - but so be it.

Courier-Mail readers jumped on the controversy, with plenty deriding the “fun police” who object to such behaviour. One said: “The fun police are on patrol. Anything that raises morale and bonds the workplace will be prosecuted!”

“Just shows a bit of creativity. Good on them for not being boring,” wrote another.

I fail to see how these sorts of antics boost morale - unless you're the organising committee for a mardi gras event.

And as for showing creativity, how about applying such flair to lesson plans to engage kids in the task of learning the basics such as English and maths - subjects in which Queensland kids are performing dismally against national and international benchmarks?

Australian education policy expert Anthony Welch, from the University of Sydney, says “good, well-prepared, enthusiastic teachers make a real difference to kids' lives, and generate better academic outcomes”.

This is true, so I'm not sure how playing dress-ups assists with that preparation.

As it stands, teachers already feel pressured to fit more into their day.

A recent federal government report notes “most teachers (92 per cent) say they ‘always' or ‘frequently' do not have enough time to prepare for effective teaching”.

The same report also states it is vital to “raise the status of the profession” in order to attract and retain the brightest educators.

This is also true. Yet some of our readers seem to believe it's unfair to ask teachers to lead by example.

“No self-respecting parent should be expecting teachers to be role models for their own children,” one said.

Certainly, parents should model the behaviour they wish their kids to emulate, but this doesn't let teachers off the hook.

They play a critical role in how young people turn out, and a raft of studies have found educational outcomes are greatest when home and school work in unison.

In that school environment, teachers set the standards, and it's obvious from student behaviour in the classroom which ones do it best.

While some kids might think it's hilarious to see what certain teachers get up to in the staff room, juvenile antics by adults cannot fail to diminish the authority of the teaching profession overall and the respect in which it is held.

One reader attempted to ameliorate the matter by saying: “Considering the way politicians behave, this is nothing.”

Look at the disdain a growing number of Queenslanders hold for politicians and tell me that's what we want for our educators.



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  • One Nation
    published this page in News 2024-03-13 09:51:30 +1000