Monday, June 25, 2007

North Carolina HS teacher and coach marries his 16-year old student-athlete

A 40-year old, male high school cross country/ track coach married one of his 16-year old, female student athletes in North Carolina. The local ABC affiliate has articles and video, as does ABCNews. There are so many things wrong with this - differences in age, maturity, educational status, power. The relationship started innocently enough by the coach giving the girl rides home when she was a freshmen in high school. After the parents realized a relationship was happening, they sought and received little assistance from school officials and even police. The girl asked her parents to sign the consent form to allow her to marry and the parents eventually gave in. Obviously, we don't and never will know the whole story, but the coach's actions are inexcusable. Teachers and coaches should be supportive, adult mentors in the lives of the children and young adults they interact with. It is completely inappropriate, immoral, and unethical for adult mentors to take advantage of youth. Stories like these, which happen too often, are disturbing.

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