Wednesday, December 14, 2005
Yes Virginia, there is a Santa Claus . . .
unless, of course, you live in Richardson, Texas.
Kathy Petree is a music teacher at Richland Elementary School in Richardson, Texas. She is the only female music teacher at this school.
On Monday, a female music teacher, presumably Ms. Petree, told her first grade students that Santa Claus isn't real.
That's right. She told them that Santa Claus wasn't real and that the children's Christmas presents come from their parents.
She has since apologized and told the kids she had talked to Santa Claus and that he was alive and well. The school district has said no disciplinary action will be taken. The school district has refused to confirm the identity of the female music teacher who made the decision, but, as I indicated, there is only one female music teacher at Richland Elementary School. You figure it out.
I'm glad that she apologized and recanted, but I wonder about an elementary school teacher who would exercise such poor judgment.
For the record, I don't think the teacher should lose her job. I don't even think she should be suspended, fined, or anything of a similar nature.
I believe it would be entirely appropriate, however, to formally reprimand her for her poor judgment in making such a statement to such young children (keep in mind -- first graders are only six or seven years old). She should have realized that such a statement was likely to unnecessarily disturb or upset her students.
But, she apologized. That's the end of it.
Never mind whether it was any of her business as to what cultural beliefs the parents wanted for their children. Never mind whether her statement had anything to do with teaching music to kids. Never mind whether she exercised poor judgment in making such a statement to a large group of very young children (many of whom were reduced to tears).
She apologized, and that's the end of it. I guess any children upset by her statements are just gonna have to grow up and deal with it.
Its a tough world, kids.