Until now, I’ve not blogged about John Freshwater. He’s the Ohio fundamentalist who’s been busted for forcing his religion onto students in his public school classroom.
But as someone who teaches, I have to say something. I teach adults (usually) instead of children, but I often teach in a laboratory environment. My top priority in a lab situation is to keep my students safe. I don’t want my students burning themselves, spilling chemicals on themselves, cutting themselves with broken glassware, or accidentally stumbling onto any of the other ways to get hurt in the chemistry lab. I want them to learn something and to have fun, but I want them leaving in at least as good a condition as they were in when they arrived.
With that in mind, I just read that the Mount Vernon school board has planned to fire John Freshwater. Good. It’s a start. He has no business in a classroom.
And, though I admit that I have little patience with fundamentalist loons like Freshwater, I don’t think his religion is his real problem. Sure, he should be fired for pushing his religion in science class. You’re not allowed to do that on the taxpayer’s dime. But let’s remember what else went on:
Freshwater burned crosses onto the arms of some of his students and told them that gays are sinners, the school board said in a resolution the five members passed unanimously yesterday after meeting privately to discuss the results of an investigation.
Firing him is letting him off too easy. This clown is supposed to be a science teacher – someone who inspires his young students with a love of science while ensuring they stay safe – and he’s deliberately injuring them? He should be prosecuted and jailed if found guilty. After being fired, of course …