Kettering substitute teacher's arrest leads to questions about social media policies
KETTERING, Ohio (WRGT/WKEF) – Former Kettering substitute teacher Madeline Marx made her first appearance in court on Monday, after being arrested and charged with two counts of sexual battery. Per court documents, Marx admitted to having sexual relationships with Kettering students, as well as sending nude photos to one of the boys through social media. With the ever-growing use of social platforms, it's forcing school districts to make decisions on whether to limit teachers from using social media.
“In today's day and age, it's very easy to not quite know when that professional vs. personal line can be drawn,” Tara Winter said. She works in the School of Education at Cedarville University.
In the case of Marx, the suspected violation is obvious, but social media is becoming more common in the classroom. Winter said there are eight codes of professional conduct for teachers.
“Number two is specific to this case, educators shall maintain professional relationships with students both in and outside the classroom,” Winter said.
Kettering teachers are not allowed to use personal social media accounts on the district network.
“They have those conversations, and they set those boundaries,” Winter said of school districts.
Dayton Public schools forbid teachers from “friending” students or communicating via text. They can't even post a picture of a student and tag them.
“There is never a time that a teacher is off duty when dealing professionally with students, their family or the community,” Winter said.
Marx is due back in court on November 21st, but the Judge’s bailiff said it will likely go to a grand jury before then.