Monday, November 06, 2006

About as effective as a marijuana tax stamp 

So we now have a policy in MnSCUfor faculty to disclose if they are dating students. Ask yourself, how many faculty do you expect to disclose? Particularly since you banned it last summer, I'd guess very few will. What this does is give another mechanism to punish faculty who have relationships with students that go sour. You won't get in trouble for the relationship itself, but for the lack of disclosure.

My first dean communicated very clearly that this was a no-no. Mrs. S was a student when I first met her, but since she was graduating the following month and would never have a class from me (and never had), we didn't worry about this. Now one must wonder if, had the rule gone into effect, I would have had to disclose.

Professional ethics should take hold here: If you can't keep your professional and personal lives separate, a disclosure rule is unlikely to do much for you. This is more about CYA at MnSCU than anything else. In general, a romantic relationship borne out of the teacher-student relationship strikes me as troublesome, since the latter has some power and mentoring aspects that get in the way of romance. At least in my opinion, it's a bad idea.