Dating my former teacher

Even if you tell them, they may not believe it.

I Spent The Night in my Teachers House and She Had No Idea… (24 Hour Challenge)

Even if neither of you expressed an interest in dating until recently, people may still suspect that you had romantic feelings for one of your students while they were your student. There is presumably some age differential. If it is small enough, people will probably ignore it. If you date more than one former student, people may view you as using your classroom as a hunting ground for future romance. If this sentiment is held widely, it could make your future students uncomfortable. I hasten to add that none of these point to any clear ethical lapse or mistake on your part. In fact, I am very sorry to say that if your relationship is not inter-racial or same sex, any push back you get will probably be mild compared to that, and if it is, that will increase the push back considerably.

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I recommend weighing the possible costs of such a relationship against the possible benefits. The professor-student relationship does not end when the course ends, and indeed might not end a year later. Professors are asked to write letters of recommendation for former students.

Sometimes they publish papers with their former students as coauthors, based on work they previously did together. Further, if "student" means that this student completed a thesis under OP's direction and not just took a class from OP , then this relationship is a lifelong one. So long as the professor-student relationship continues to exist, a potential power imbalance exists, and an ethical problem arises. Whether your colleagues consider this a serious ethical problem is addressed by Pete Clark's answer.

If I am single, I reserve the right to pick off a member of society to be my mate. The very notion that I must temporarily restrain myself from choosing such a relationship with the people whom I actively have direct authority over The idea that anyone is permanently blacklisted from being a potential candidate, just because I have ever encountered that person in a class which I taught, is way too unfairly exclusionary.

Such a requirement would be unethical.


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I remember a college class which was required for all students in the college. Would it be a sensible expectation that a college professor should be required to seek a mate from among the less educated, or from a remote town? When I signed up to be a college professor, I never agreed to limit my long-term life options in such a way. Assuming you are on the receiving end it's also possible to read 3 as "despite my prior attempts" I think this may be unethical only if you are accepting the relation knowing or having reasons to suspect that the datee has other than romantic motivations for it or that the datee mistakes student-teacher bonds for romantic bonds, which I guess 3 is supposed to rule out.

Otherwise you may consider social implications as other answers suggest, but behaving in accordance with social conventions has nothing to do with ethics. I guess it shouldn't be a problem, a famous example can be found here and here: Both are highly respected in their field. Thank you for your interest in this question.

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Any ethical problems with dating a former student? Assume the student recently graduated but works nearby; has not been my student for over 1 year; has never expressed any interest in dating until very recently; has a father who is a coworker at my institution different department.

ethics - Any ethical problems with dating a former student? - Academia Stack Exchange

Enthusiastic Engineer 5, 9 38 Jamal Wilson Jamal Wilson 1 3 6. I fail to see how 4 is relevant to the ethics of the titular question. If they've met at a birthday party, etc I don't see a moral issue IF the power unbalance is now gone - vadim's answer below is good , but thought I'd relate this: A female teacher had a relationship with a male ex-student after he graduated , and she was immediately fired.

Actual ethics often take a back-seat to any often biased and unfair cultural standards as defined by parents, other faculty, or outside pressure. My bachelor advisor was in a similar situation. Although he is a CS professor while the student was a math major, so same department but different degree areas. I believe they started dating before she graduated, and got married a few years afterwards.

I don't see any sign that this was frowned upon from other department professors. However at that point I'll be 35 and dating a 21 year old is already too young for me. I also said I'd never date a student. Stop trying to ruin my Christmas you crusty bitch. I hope your 16 year old daughter dates a 45 year old truck driver and you get stuck raising her six bastards.

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Very inappropriate, wouldn't want you anywhere near 10 year olds, but what should I expect from a person who thinks its cool to date their students. Your poor grammar makes me question your appropriateness as a teacher. Thanks for that pedantic concern. However, typing on the iPad does not always equal perfect grammar.

For you, grammar correctness is on the same level as dating an ex-student.


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That is a scary thought. Ask your cooperating teacher someone with some actual teaching experience if dating an ex student is kosher. Maybe you could offend them with your nonchalant attitude towards inappropriate interactions with students. You might want to read this. So I'm a Puritan for thinking it's inappropriate to date a former student? Not sure if you have children but I wonder if you would have the same Laissez faire attitude if it were YOUR child that was dating their high school science teacher even if it were 10 years after they graduated.

You might begin to question whether they had those same feelings about your child during their teen years. We're not talking about children anymore though. The scenario we're talking about is a 30 year old teacher randomly meeting a 26 year old former pupil on a night out and striking up a romance, or something equivalent. What's the problem there?

Your attempt to shame OP with your "I question your ethics as a teacher" bullshit is proof enough.

Dating a Former Teacher

Wow, I really question the future of teaching with all the morally bankrupt comments I've seen here. I really hope that the majority of people who think it's fine are actually non-teacher trolls because if they are actual teachers, it's a shame.

Which state do you teach in? So I can make sure that my children never come in contact with a predator such as yourself. It's not predatory for a grown 20 something to date a 30 something former teacher of theirs. An adult dating another consenting adult is not a crime. And when your admin finds out about your "adult relationship" and you find yourself on the unemployment line, at least you'll have the former student to comfort you.

I know that they can't fire you for dating an ex student but there are ways for admins to get people to resign who they don't want at the school. If I was your admin I would not want a person who would date an ex-student on my staff. Good luck with finding your future husband in one of your classes though. OP said that he has a small age gap with his current students so it wouldn't be weird if 8 years from now, he ran into one of them and they hit it off and ended up dating.

You're sitting here talking like he's luring students into his windowless panel van with candy and shoving a chloroform cloth over their faces. Speaking of trolls, you're probably some fat, hairy bachelor that doesn't need to worry about having kids. You should be worrying about your own love-life.

Ad hominem attacks are a clear indication that you have lost the argument, so thanks for that. Are you even a teacher? I'll be student teaching next semester, in CO, if you actually care. But in spite of my unwarranted attacks on your vehement character, the countless downvotes and rebuttal from others in this thread are an indicator that you are out of touch with the dominant teaching culture.

I hope you can still see your penis under your gut, happy holidays ad hominem is my favorite fallacy: I can do this all day. I'll look for you in the news. Feelings can not be helped.

The fact the teacher did NOT take advantage when he could speaks more volumes for his character than if he had not had the feelings at all. What an odd morality check. So because something would've once been inappropriate based upon the roles it's always inappropriate? This is like saying that since it's inappropriate for a boss to date a subordinate fair enough therefore it's inappropriate for a person to date someone that was ever their subordinate even if ten years had passed.

What am I missing? Why is it immoral or inappropriate to date a fellow consenting adult that was once a student? The difference between your analogy is the fact that the boss-subordinate relationship began when both parties were adults. In contrast, the teacher-student relationship began when one person was underage.

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Even if there was no inappropriate behavior while the underage party was still in school, there would be questions as to the timeline of the relationship. No admin would want a teacher working in their schoo who had questionalble morals. I wouldn't feel comfortable working with someone who sees ex students as possible sexual partners. Parents would be horrified at the situation. I still can't figure out why people are arguing so hard for the right to date their students. It shouldn't even be a consideration for a professional. Should it, absolutely not. So you see, your analogy is not valid.