The Right Call
If everyone deserves a second chance, then rehiring Parkersburg High School physical education teacher Jesse Young was the right thing to do.
Young was suspended in March by the Wood County Board of Education for his participation in the infamous Harlem Shake video where several of his students in the video lewdly danced while his back was turned.
Let us agree on this. The video clearly was out of bounds. Teachers should not participate in such conduct. It was a fireable offense.
Young, who was the principal dancer in the video, said he was unaware of the students’ actions behind his back.
Several people spoke on his behalf during a hearing before the board of education. After hearing them and after an approximately 90-minute executive session, the board added Young to the rehire list for the next school year.
People will disagree with this decision. Teachers are supposed to be adults, or at least act like adults. They are not supposed to act like kids.
However, Young is not that much older than his students. It is not an excuse, but his error can be overcome by the experience that comes with maturity both as a person and as a teacher.
Hopefully, Young will learn from this experience and he will be a better teacher for it.