Ask Scary Mommy is Scary Mommy’s new advice column, where our team of “experts” answers all the questions you have about life, love, body image, friends, parenting, and anything else that’s confusing you.
This week… What do you do when you find out your child’s teacher is posting anti-vaxx propaganda on social media? Do you voice your concerns to the principal? Have your own questions? Email firstname.lastname@example.org
Dear Scary Mommy,
It’s recently come to my attention that my son’s teacher has been actively and regularly posting anti-vaccination propaganda on her personal Facebook page. Several parents of kids in her class are now aware of this, and many of us are concerned. Especially because the stuff she posts is in relation to vaccines causing autism, and, of course, there are children with autism in the (public) elementary school my son attends. I don’t want to jeopardize her job here, but I’m also extremely uncomfortable with her anti-science, anti-facts views and I do feel that while those might be her opinions, they’re harmful and should come with some sort of consequence. Do I talk to the principal about this? Should I let it go, since the school year is almost over and see if someone else wants to make it their problem?
Oy. Facebook is a cesspool, that’s true, but a school teacher spreading propaganda and dangerous misinformation is worrisome. The chance that Ms. Jenny McCarthy Surrogate is indoctrinating elementary students with harmful rhetoric about vaccines as part of the curriculum is likely a small one. But I absolutely validate your concerns, because that shit is never ok — and especially not during a pandemic.
With unemployment rates skyrocketing and hitting record highs nationwide, coming for someone’s job isn’t…great right now. I get that. But you’re right about one thing, “free speech” isn’t free from consequences. And, when it comes to a massively deadly pandemic, opinions aren’t facts. Sure, we’re all entitled to feel the way we want to feel about it. But when those feelings get mistaken for facts, it can endanger public health.
As a public school teacher, I’m surprised she isn’t naturally more cautious about sharing such divisive garbage on social media. So I think it’s natural that one could assume if she isn’t censoring herself on social media, she isn’t censoring herself in the classroom.
It’s the end of May, like you said, so its easy to just say “to tell with it” and try to block it out as your son finishes the year. And you don’t mention any incidents outside of her social media, so I’m going to assume she hasn’t told her class that Bill Gates wants them to get vaccinated so he can implant them with a chip that forces them into sex-trafficking for George Soros inside a 5G tower full of hydrochloronique.
But I don’t think there’s anything wrong with sending the principal a casual “head’s up” via email or phone call, whichever you prefer (putting things in writing can always bite us in the ass), and voicing your concerns. After all, she’s not hiding her views very well and if many parents already know about them, there’s already a problem.
Good luck and stay safe, mama.
Have your own questions? Email email@example.com