Laws about students and teachers dating
Should it be a crime for a public school teacher to have sex with one of her students? I felt like if we didn't do that, we just virtually made it open season on students that are 18-years-old." Most teachers don't need a criminal law to tell us that it's wrong to have sex with our students no matter how old they are (mine are in their 20's and 30's, and it's still wrong).
But don't tell that to some of my friends on the panel last night of Fox's "On the Record," where I was all alone with host Greta van Susteren in being willing to enforce the law against a 25- year old former beauty contest participant who had sex with one of her students. As Representative Warren Chisum, who proposed the amendment dropping the age limit explained, "If they're a student, I just think they're off bounds regardless of their age.
Second, it ignores the power relationship between the woman and her student, which makes this different from the usual male-female relationship, and puts the boy on a different footing.
The truth is that we are used to thinking of men as not needing protection in a male-female relationship, assuming that they're 18 or older. Locker room humor that obscures that reality leaves boys, by virtue of the accident of their birth date, in a precarious position.
But because the students in question were 18, no charges were filed. The bills would prohibit any adult working or volunteering at a school from soliciting or engaging in sexual conduct, lewd conduct or a romantic relationship with a student.
“If it’s a student and it’s a teacher, or any other personnel, employee of the district, then that is a relationship that is off-limits and unacceptable,” said Rep.
"Wish I'd had a teacher like that in school," men say. First, it demeans male sexuality as unworthy of protection, without regard to age.A school resource officer at her old high school was fired last summer for sending inappropriate text messages to students at the school, she told the House Education Committee on Wednesday.An investigation revealed that the officer had used law enforcement databases to target high school students who were 18 or older, she said.Would it have been different if it were a male teacher and an 18-year-old girl? There is no question that there is a double standard in sex abuse cases, and nowhere is it more apparent than in what seems to be the growing number of teacher sex cases.We all react with shock at the very idea of a male teacher "taking advantage" of young women in his class; I can't imagine a panel having trouble with criminal charges in such a case, no matter how good looking the man, indeed, especially if he were good looking.
She writes the "Portia" column for American Lawyer Media and is a contributing editor of The Los Angeles Times.