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Hand me the tape

A Pennsylvania middle school teacher is in hot water after a photo surfaced that shows her taping a mask to a student’s face.

In response to the photo, the North Penn School District has released a statement in which it condemns the unidentified teacher’s actions as “inappropriate and unacceptable.” It goes on to read, “Pro-mask or anti-mask, I hope we can all agree that taping masks to children’s faces crosses the line. This was not a joke for the child or the parents.” The student’s mother adds, “What has transpired is like a scene from my worst nightmare.”

The district says the matter is “being addressed” with the teacher. It’s unclear what disciplinary action — if any — will be taken.

In 1973 my parents moved us from Nebraska to Florida. It was a small town outside of Orlando. I was in 3rd grade. One of the other students in my class was a bit of a hand full. He was a bit out of control and since we became friends, I pushed the limits a bit more than I would had I not had his influence. Sometime during class time, the teacher asked me to be quiet. I didn’t listen so she grabbed a roll or tape and ran the tape over my mouth and around my head at least 4 times. That pretty much finished up my day and I had to sit there with tape on my face for what seemed like forever. When I got home I told my parents. My Dad immediately said “What did you do to deserve that?” Nothing I said. “Nothing?” She just randomly picked you and decided to tape your mouth shut? “Well no, I was talking.” “Oh so you were told to be quiet and you didn’t listen correct?” That was exactly what happened. I talked when told not to and paid the price. Did she need all that tape? Probably not BUT, I can tell you I listened to everything she said after that experience. My Dad knew it was on me. Totally my own fault. And to be honest it absolutely was on me. I didn’t listen. I don’t blame the teacher but this was a different time. In 1973 your Dad would have said the same as mine and sometimes, you would get yelled at or grounded at home as a bonus. 

Did this teacher need to tape the mask on this kid? I don’t know. I wasn’t there. Maybe the kid was asked to keep his mask on and he continued to remove it. Wasn’t there, didn’t see it or hear it so that’s all speculation. I feel pretty confident that the teacher didn’t tape the mask on that kid because it looked like fun. What was the real reason? I doubt we’ll find out because the news organizations will skew it. 

I don’t have a big issue with this. IF this was my child I would first need to know why she taped his mask on? Again, I’m guessing because he wouldn’t leave it alone. I wouldn’t blame her. I wouldn’t file a law suit or threaten the teacher or the principal. My kid should have listened and after this, I’m guessing he’ll listen next time.  


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