Well over a year ago, I wrote a post bemoaning the state of investigative reporting in the metro Phoenix area. At that time I wrote that while investigative reporting is almost a lost art in the valley, some local media outlets, KPHO-TV (channel 5) among them, were better than average because of their consumer affairs reporting.
Tonight, channel 5 joined Fox10, the AZ Rep, and the rest of the 'winners' in the "not even pretending to be real journalists" category.
Tonight, they ran a piece on "Teachers Exposing Private Life On MySpace."
Seems they were bored, so they obtained a list of names of new teachers and searched for those names on Facebook and MySpace. The piece, breathlessly pimped in endless promo spots through the evening, recounted the "shocking" results of their research.
From the way the piece was promoted, and the way in began with a somber warning that no parent should miss the report, I expected to stories of child molesters in the classroom or something equally horrifying.
So what did channel 5 uncover?
A teacher with a bad attitude toward an ex-girlfriend (rude song), pictures of obscene gestures, and pictures of wild partying in college.
Oh my God!! These...these...these....*teachers*...actually had a good time in college! Stop the presses!! Yank their licenses!!!
Ummm...OK, maybe not. :))
In the end, the best part was when KPHO interviewed Tom Horne, AZ Superintendent of Public Instruction, for the story. They got him to pontificate on the topic, saying that these teachers shouldn't do anything in their personal lives that they wouldn't do in front of the children that they teach.
Could somebody tell Mr. Horne something for me?
The list of things that they "wouldn't do in front of the children" includes things like making love to their wives/husbands, using the bathroom, and doing their taxes.
Is he suggesting that they stop doing those things completely (ending up horny, constipated, and stuck in federal prison), or that they should do those things in the classroom (which may take "horny" and "constipated" out of the mix, but definitely increases the likelihood of prison)??
Note: KPHO didn't have the clip available on their website tonight but they do indicate that it will be available tomorrow.