CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (AP) — The number of public school teachers facing disciplinary action in Tennessee is on the rise, and social media could be partly to blame.
A Chattanooga Times Free Press review of disciplinary data over the past decade data shows teachers are increasingly failing to maintain appropriate boundaries as the proliferation of social media facilitates constant communication between teacher and student.
The review found that 160 teachers have been disciplined for crossing the line with students or other minors since 2004. Some were caught sending inappropriate messages. Others had sexual relationships with their students.
And while the percentage of Tennessee's 65,000 public school teachers facing discipline is small, advocates say some cases — particularly those involving sexual misconduct — come at a high cost to vulnerable children.