Hypocrisy of school teachers...

This has been bothering me for a long time so I felt I had to share it with the SDMB.

In my county one semester of Health is required in order to graduate. It basically goes over nutrition, depression, sex, STDs, drugs and other things of that nature. My school’s Health teacher is also the director of SADD, students against Destructive Decisions at our school. Our school I think has the largest chapter in the state with over 300 students.

While she’s a very nice lady, her hypocrisy is almost astounding. She has 4 children (3 boys and one girl), 1 of which used to go to the school (and still frequently is around doing things like coaching or substituting), and 3 currently enrolled at the school. Her two sons are well-known druggies, very heavily into marijuana and are just all-around not good kids. Her daughter’s no saint either, and I know that they’re all definitely making some destructive decisions. Her oldest son is very, very sketchy- a lot of people think he deals drugs. He doesn’t have a real job, he just substitutes occasionally.

Putting her family aside, SADD is full of kids who aren’t very wise in their decisions, and she knows it. A kid who was expelled for bringing alcohol to school came back and is now an officer. Kids who admittedly drink and drive are also officers. She knows about this, and instead of being harsh she just accepts it. As long as it LOOKS like she’s doing good things she’s content.

A girl at my school died in a car accident and many of her friends- all SADD members- spoke at a little vigil held. It seemed like all they did was get drunk and drive around. The teacher seemed sympathetic but I was just horrified. This teacher is so well respected by her peers and I think it’s just terrible.

You know, Alcoholics Anonymous is also full of…{gasp}…alcoholics. I’m sorry, that was just a light-hearted poke. You know, it sounds like her kids are making the poor choices, not her. Her involvement with SADD may be her attempt to try to make a change in other kids’ lives, since her own kids don’t seem to be making the most of themselves.

And as for the kids that are members of SADD, perhaps they’re the ones that can most benefit from being members, in that they still have so much to learn. Back to the AA comparison, who is the one that most needs that group at the moment…one who has been alcohol-free for 15 years, or one who has just recently strayed back and had a few drinks?

Don’t condemn a parent as a hypocrite if their children turn out to be total screw-ups. Sometimes no matter what a parent teaches, their stupid kids decide to make their own stupid mistakes, and there is really very little a parent can do until the child makes the decision to change. One of mine has made that decision to change, the other one hasn’t, yet.

I forgot to add that all her children are also members of the club, in fact her daughter is President. The biggest problem I think is people join the club because it would look good for colleges and there are a lot of other perks with joining.

It just seems to me like she doesn’t practice what she preaches. She warns about how unhealthy and dangerous our particular wrestling team is- using diuretics, rapid weight loss/gain, unhealthy diet plans, running until you puke and puking until nothing will come out any more…but of course both of her sons are on the team. If she is telling her students not to wrestle I find it ironic that she’d let her own children do it.

It doesn’t seem that she isn’t telling them not to wrestle but not to practice self destructive behavior.

As for her own kids being hellions that is life sometimes. Her kids aren’t mindless automitons and they may well decide to be bad kids despite her efforts to raise them right. It isn’t hypocritical to say be good even though my kids are not. It would be to say be good even though I am not.

I’m not sure the issue here is so much the teacher’s hypocrisy as it is she is extremely bad at her job, knows it, and doesn’t care. AFIK, SADD is not a rehab-twelve step program, so we’re not talking about a certain percentage of members “falling off the wagon” and needing help. We’re talking about kids who are joining an orgainzation they don’t believe in because it will look good on their resumes, and the director of the organization doing nothing to stop it, and even giving kids who are in flagrant violation of its principles.

Also, I think a woman with four kids, all of whom have turned out to be alcoholics or drug addicts, is an extremely poor choice as the director of a SADD chapter. I could understand if she raised three happy, healthy kids and one turned out to be a black sheep, this happens in a lot of families, but all four of them? It is obvious that this woman has been unable to teach her own children how to make good/non-destructive life choices, and now is in charge of trying to teach a larger group to do the same?

Something just doesn’t smell right about this situation. Did she get this job because she’s connected with someone in the school district’s administration?

Your feelings are correct Splanky but in the addiction industry that is the way things work. AA is run by alcoholics. All the 12 step groups look up to people who have failed in life but have subsequently “overcome their addictions”, people who have led sound lives are not revered at all.

Only two weeks ago I was in a shop and overheard a conversation between two guys about where they were going to meet to have a drink before they went to AA. I’m sure they are both someone’s sponsor.

And she’s not a hypocrite because she’s a teacher, she just is.

I should add a friend of mine is a drug and alcohol counsellor in the prison service. His qualification - former heroin addict.

This type of situation is more common then you think. There is a kid in our town that is heavy in to coke and weed, and has even dealt on a few occasions. Occupations of the immediate family?

Father: Village Trustee
Brother: Police Officer
Mother: Teacher.


I thought this thread was about how teachers are crying ‘poor’, while school parking lots are filled w/ luxery cars and SUV’s.

Several years ago the gym teacher at my kids’ school – who also taught drivers’ ed. and health, including the anti-drug classes – was arrested for possession with attempt to distribute when substantial amounts of hard-core drugs were found in the home he shared with his girlfriend. Go figure.

So Splanky, because one teacher is, in your opinion, a hypocrite, all teachers are hypocrites? That betrays a fundamental lack of critical thinking on your part.

Besides which, she isn’t a hypocrite. Were she a hypocrite, she would be the one doing all the things she decried - drinking, using drugs, behaving in a self-destructive manner. It may be that she believes implicitly in what she is telling you, but has been unable to impart these beliefs to her children or hold them accountable for it. That is not hypocrisy. That’s poor parenting.

My experience - as a teacher - is that we are human beings, and our behavior runs the gamut. Several of my students in the past three years were the children of teachers. Their behavior in school (and out of it, as far as I know) was impeccable. Part of this was because we lived in a very small town where it was very easy to keep up on what the kids were doing. Part of this was because their parents did their jobs, both as teachers and parents.

Until you take a look at a wider selection of teachers and their children, please hold off on the blanket announcement that we’re hypocrites.

Where is that school district??? Most of my fellow co-workers have 2nd jobs just to get by.

Those all belong to the students, dude. :wink:

It never ceases to amaze me how quick people are to criticize and lay blame on teachers as a whole. Yes, there are some bad ones, no doubt about it. A thread titled “Hypocrisy of school teachers…” antagonizes me enough that I had to check in. I’m not surprised-- you’re railing against the human condition here-- the “do as I say, not as I do” phenomenon that is by no means the sole province of teachers.

This teacher, the SADD organizer, probably really wishes her kids would be drug-free and good people. She failed, but she’s probably hoping that eventually the message will get through to her kids and others. I don’t think her problem is hypocrisy, really, nor do I think ANY of this is correlated with her being a school teacher. All that does is make her an easy target for people like you. Plenty of
“fine, upstanding citizens” have kids who are screw ups.

As for the wrestling: is she telling you not to wrestle? Or not to screw up your body by putting in through rigors that are unhealthy? When I taught high school, I had the captain of the wrestling team in my class. He was always agonizinig about his weight, trying all these crazy diets and plans, not to mention that his ears were so completely destroyed that he had to get reconstructive surgery on on them. I never told the kid he shouldn’t wrestle, because he loved it and was good at it, but I did inwardly wonder if it was worthwhile and healthful for him to be putting himself through all that.

I’m more inclined to share sentiments with the OP. I had very similar stuff going on at my high school, and maybe I can clarify my feelings a bit better by sharing a few stories. The adviser for the Fellowship of Christian Students was a teacher with two high school aged kids. Both were officers, and both were well-known, popular kids who, well, partied it up in a most un-Christian-Fellowship-like fashion. (I’m not saying that Christianity precudes partying, I’m just saying that this group was dedicated to the idea that the Bible condemns drinking, sex, drugs, etc.) It was pretty crazy watching the party kids get up and talk about how we were to set shining examples of God’s love for the rest of the school. Needless to say, I was part of the group for about one meeting. The other story I share is one about a girl at my high school who got a DUI. While her license was suspended, her mom drove her to school so she wouldn’t have to ride the bus.

What these stories and that of the OP tell me is that it’s kind of appalling to see that adults are mindlessly maintaining the trappings that their communities care about the welfare of their children when it’s clear that the children really have free reign. Why isn’t the OP’s teacher using this opportunity to get serious with her children? They’re probably not alcoholics or drug addicts who need the help of the program to pull their lives together; they’re kid who don’t care enough about the consequences of their actions to have a little more self-control. Drunk driving is serious business, and as officers of SADD, they’re supposed to set an example for the student body. If there’s anything worth “being harsh” about with teenagers, it’s drunk driving, right?

I think that some adults want to absolve themselves of responsibility for their kids by keeping up the appearance that they’re doing something good. I also think that some adults care too much about their kids having a good time and not enough about them doing the right thing. The OP’s teacher sounds like she falls into both groups, and it’s really detrimental to everyone involved. If I’d gotten a DUI in high school, I’d have been grounded and under house arrest until age 18 and forced to ride the bus with the underclassmen or walk to school every single day, and I knew it. Not all kids are just like me, but I sure as hell didn’t even think about boozing it up.

What’s this about all teachers? I took the thread title as a figure of speech referring to a school teacher. Like saying, “the hypocrasy of astronauts…” if one of your astronaut friends did something hypocritical. I’m pretty sure the OP wasn’t talking about all teachers, but rather using a common expression.

While you are correct in pointing out that the OP never makes any general statements about all teachers being hypocrites, the thread title is misleading. He didn’t say, “Hypocrisy of my health teacher” or “Hypocrisy of my SADD advisor.” He made a blanket statement about school teachers, using the plural noun to indicate that he was speaking of teachers in general. You can understand why that particular thread title could make a body feel defensive, I’m sure. We hear stuff like this on a regular basis and maybe the reaction has gotten a bit knee-jerk.

That said, I believe the OP that his teacher is not practicing what she preaches and is probably in a lot of denial about how her children behave. Thus, if she is a hypocrite, her hypocrisy is incidental to the fact that she’s a teacher. I’ve seen hypocrisy of this stripe in all walks of life. It’s particularly unfortunate because she is inadvertantly providing a terrible example to kids like the OP.