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Should teachers date the parents of their students?

In Lessons From A Younger Lover, romantic sparks fly between Gwen Smith and Ransom Blake from the moment that they first bump into each other at a coffee shop. Later, Gwen (a new teacher at Sienna Elementary School) discovers that her favorite first grade student and Ransom’s daughter Isis are one in the same. At forty-years-of-age, Gwen wants to ignore the sparks of lust of she feels for twenty-six-year-old Ransom. Ransom believes that age is just a number and is interested stoking the sparks. Wanting to be the picture of propriety, Gwen tries to spurn his advances. She initially thinks that Ransom is way too young and teachers dating the parents of their students is unprofessional.

Do you think that it is okay for a teacher to date the parent of one of her/his students?

This plot point brought up a lot of questions for me.

  • What is the standard protocol for a teacher dating the parent of a student?
  • Do schools even allowed that these days?
  • Will Isis be labelled teacher’s pet and picked on by other students?
  • With Isis being Gwen’s favorite student and the daughter of her potential lover, can Gwen really be impartial?
  • What kind of problems could occur if/when the relationship ceases?

[WARNING SPOILER ALERT]

The fact that Gwen didn’t get more direct pressure from the school’s administration or other parents seemed strange to me. I thought that the school would have made Isis transfer to another class (concerns about favouritism) – in light of Adam Johnson’s (principal) feelings about Gwen and Ransom’s romance. At the very least, I thought that Gwen would have asked for Isis to be transferred since she was so concerned about propriety. But, perhaps that would have drawn even more unwanted attention to the romance.

I had similar questions about Dominique Clark’s and Jake MacDonald’s relationship in another Zuri Day read, Love in Play. Jake was Dominique’s son’s football coach and tutor. Apparently, this type of thing is more commonplace than I thought. I even found an article called Tips on Dating Your Child’s Teacher on eHow.com.

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