Students and Teachers Texting

WARNING. This is about student and teacher texting, something many teachers and administrators oppose, avoid or caution against. 
This post was prompted by a conversation I had from my front porch with one of my neighbors. We were talking about schools (public vs private), teachers, tenure … and about all the yard/house/garage decorating he has seen courtesy of many bandsters (and parents). BTW, he thinks that is “really cool” and confessed that he advised painting my grass next time. Really? Oh, but we also talked about survellience cameras…..just sayin’.
But during the conversation, I got a text from a student on vacation…. and it blew him away when I told him that. We talked about what each of us thought of that….. i.e. students texting a teacher from Spring Break vacation.
I got several, actually…..
…from 2 different students vacationing near the ocean about a song I should listen to.
… from 2 states away about a saxophone tie found (that I didn’t already have).
… from (?) suggesting a show theme
… from Tennessee…. with a picture of a UK logo hanging on the wall of the home being visited for Easter.
… from Florida….just sharing a weather observation.
Oh, and I think for most of those…..I texted back….and I usually do.
When my neighor asked me if I get overwhelmed with texts, I gave him the same answer I typically share when I get variations of that question; that I enjoy hearing from and communicating with students, that none of them have abused my number, that most texts are about something band, and that teachers who are afraid of communicating with students via texting or facebook (etc) are missing out.
What do YOU think?
ps 3 posts about Students & Teachers Facebook Friending from last year. Here’s the first….



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3 thoughts on “Students and Teachers Texting

  1. I’m torn about the thought of teachers texting current high school students. I see no problem with you doing it. Honestly, I think it’s part of what makes you a cool teacher, but I would probably not do it myself. I did it occasionally when I was a first year teacher back in 2006. Then again, I’m only about 10 years older than the average high school student, and I wouldn’t want to cross any lines. I’ve had friends and colleagues in the past who have gotten in trouble with their school districts for texting their students.

    1. I acknowledge the risk and potential for abuse, but I wouldn’t hesitate to show any parent or administrator any text (or fb) exchange with a student. The overwhelming qty are legit questions, what time, what do we wear, may I…., here’s an idea for the show… I understand what you’re saying about age differences. Yeah, the old, fat, bald, ugly….thing makes it easier for me. I have to watch out for the “creeper” kinda accusation. But I have always been a close communicator w/students. In my first job, where I was just 4yrs older than the seniors when I started….. and even now….. the band office has always been a hang-out place, although the current furniture setup (not accidentlly — but not my idea) hinders some of that. I don’t wanna be anybody’s “best bud”, but I do want to be able to corporately use the phrase “love, admire, respect” in describing my approach. I want students (and many do) to be comfortable with coming to be about ANYTHING because of admiration and respect that I’ve earned. It has worked FOR ME for over 30 yrs. If it ever cost me my job, I think I’ve come out ahead.

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