Sunday, May 4, 2014

The hazards of whistle-blowing

The hubby gets the credit for finding this disturbing video from Atlanta, Georgia.

It highlights the risks we all take with our children every day just by sending them to school. Non-verbal, as most of the profoundly disabled are, they are incapable of reporting abuse. As such, it stands to reason that psychotic, sadistic people would be attracted to jobs in their schools. Consequently, we would expect administrators to vet applicants far more stringently than regular administrators.

But do they? This clip raises serious doubts about that. In addition, it posits another issue: How to react if you witness abuse? 

Well, you just report it, right?

Not necessarily. The teacher responsible for this clip - by planting a hidden camera in her classroom - has apparently lost her job. She fears she may never again be hired in her district as a consequence of her whistle-blowing. Her students will have lost an intelligent and compassionate teacher.

In short, this is no black and white matter.

And where does this leave us when we witness abuse or neglect? If, as this teacher maintains, "the system doesn't like whistle-blowers", it surely likes parent-whistle-blowers even less.

As I've posted here before, we have evidence of C. and her classmates being left in sports room equipment unfastened and unsupervised [here, here, here and here]. Not one staff member was in the room when I took the photos on various occasions.

To date we have not shown them to anybody. Since we are among the few parents who visit the school - other than at parent-teacher meetings - the staff would deduce that we were the source of the photos even if we sent them anonymously. We shudder to imagine  the repercussions of such a scenario.

This video has reinforced our conviction that the photos will remain under wraps - at least for now. I would appreciate hearing your views on whether to blow the whistle or pocket it.

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