79-Year-Old Teacher Forced Out After Refusing to Unfriend Students on Facebook
Unfriend or be fired! New Hampshire school officials gave a 79-year-old substitute teacher that ultimatum after she ‘friended’ some of her students on Facebook. Carol Thebarge refused, forcing her to leave Stevens High School.
Thebarge was a teacher for the past 35 years and worked at 32 different schools without an issue.
Fox affiliate WGHP reported:
“Today will be my last day at Stevens High,” Thebarge said, in a Facebook announcement. “I was given an ultimatum; to either delete every student from my Facebook page and do not post pictures of them, or be terminated.”
Thebarge said school officials gave her the ultimatum after a math teacher was recently charged with sexual assault on a 14-year-old girl in his classroom.
She said she started deleting students, but stopped after about 50 when she had students start asking her what they did wrong.
Thebarge said some students have seen her Facebook page as a place where they can send private messages about being bullied or feeling depressed.
School Superintendent Middleton McGoodwin said that Claremont School Board policy bans teachers from being “friends” with students on social networking sites such as Facebook.
The superintendent said the principal asked Thebarge to delete students from her “friends” list, and she refused.
“In truth, being a caring, lovely woman doesn’t give you immunity to ignore a school board policy that’s designed to protect everyone,” he said.
Attorneys Rebecca Rose Woodland and Elura Nanos debated the case on Your World with Neil Cavuto. Watch the debate above and tell us where you stand on this issue.