Idaho teacher allegedly fed a puppy to a snapping turtle in front of his class
Being a teacher requires a creative mind and the ability to make boring subjects seem interesting. While it may have been a number of years since I finished my education and, even though I hated the majority of my time at school, I still remember certain subjects fondly for the way that they were taught.
Whether it was my sociology teacher opening my eyes to the ways in which society is set up to exploit the poor, or my science teacher burning a load of jelly babies to show that they scream - certain lessons were taught to me in a creative manner that not only captured my imagination, but also expanded my mind.
However, while these lessons were taught in a unique way, they were also done professionally. Sadly, the same can't be said for Robert Crosland, a Preston Junior High School science teacher who has landed himself in serious trouble over a “regrettable circumstance involving some of the biological specimens,” according to Superintendent Marc Gee.
It's being reported that the regrettable circumstances were, well, feeding a puppy to a turtle while his students watched.
Gee told East Idaho News that the incident happened after students had been dismissed and it was not part of a "school-directed program". However, according to local animal activists, the puppy was still alive and was apparently heard screaming during the ordeal.
Despite the police becoming involved, Crosland has not been charged with any crime or placed on leave from his job.
Three former students claim that they have seen Crosland feed guinea pigs to “snakes and turtles during classroom demonstrations".
“He is a cool teacher who really brought science to life,” a former student says. “I loved his class because he had turtles and snakes and other cool things."
Despite the controversy, Gee says that he hopes people remember the years of service that Crosland has given to the school
“While the district certainly does not condone individual actions that may violate district policy or reasonable expectations of behavior, we hope that any errors in judgment made by a teacher in this instance will not cause us to forget the years of care, effort and passion the teacher has given to students in Preston School District."
While it's not known if the puppy was dead or alive at the time of the incident, it's a pretty distressing turn of events that doesn't really belong in the classroom. In addition to being an inhumane and callous experience for the students to have been exposed to, the Centers for Disease Control explicitly warns on its website about the dangers of stray, wild or unhealthy animals spreading diseases in school environments.
“We’re investigating the facts and turning it over to the prosecutor,” Franklin County Sheriff David Fryar told Fox 13. “He’s the one who will determine if the law has been broken.”
Science is undoubtedly meant to be an exciting subject which opens the eyes of students to things that they would never have seen before. However, maybe feeding a puppy to a turtle is a little too far?