Do you know the story of Amanda Todd? The story has received a lot of publicity in Canada, but possibly people outside of our country don’t know much about it.
Amanda Todd was a teenage girl who was horribly bullied and abused and this fall, tragically took her own life. The incident set off a firestorm of controversy across our country and set many people to soul searching. Before she took her own life, Amanda posted a video to Youtube that was a cry for help.
If you haven’t seen it, please take the time to do it.
Knowing that Amanda took her life only a short time after this was posted makes it even more wrenching to watch.
But this story goes deeper. A few days ago, the Globe and Mail newspaper reported on an incident where a teacher in a classroom had shown this video to his students and now parents are calling for him to lose his job. The full story is here.
While any story has at least two sides and perspectives and it sounds like there are a number of parts to this story that aren’t being fully reported on, I was just as disturbed by the fact that
“Durham District School Board superintendent Anne Marie Laginski (has) said (that) memos have been sent to all schools in the district telling them not to show the video.”
I’m disturbed by a superintendent stepping in and banning a certain piece of content from classrooms. I’m disturbed by a school board that doesn’t seem to want their students to interact with content that has important implications for their lives. This was a national story that appeared in almost every media stream that Canadians had access to. Banning it from classrooms would simply force students to watch it from home where they may have been doing so on their own.
The internet and the information it gives us access to makes it more difficult to stick our heads in the sand and pretend that controversy doesn’t exist.
I’m interested to know what people think of stories like this one. Should we restrict controversial content from classrooms? (age appropriate of course) Does having access to the internet and information make it impossible to hide from situations like this?