The Naked Teacher Principle holds, in essence, that once a teacher is seen by his or her students cavorting in the nude, school administrators and parents are not being unreasonable or unfair if they decide that the teacher can no longer teach effectively. From the classic example involving internet photos, to exceptions like the male teacher appearing in a community theater production of “The Full Monte”, to strange corollaries like “the Naked Butt-Painting Teacher with a Paper Bag Over His Head Variation,” naked teachers create headaches for their schools, giggles (at least) for their students, and anxiety for the teachers involved.
Now we have another variation.
A well-regarded St. Louis County high school science teacher, Tera Myers, saw her new career fall apart when her past as a porn star “Nikki Andersin” was discovered by a student who was surfing the Internet. It turns out, though she never revealed it to her St. Louis employers, that Myers had lost another job five years ago over the same issue when she was a teacher (using yet another alias) in Paducah, Kentucky.
It seems cruel that an apparently talented teacher like Myers is still haunted by a fifteen-year old career choice that she abandoned, but the Naked Teacher Principle is powerful. She may be respectable and trustworthy now, but the students in her class, or some of them, will never be able to see her as just a teacher and authority figure, not when they can see her as a sex symbol and porn star too. And parents of teenagers can’t be faulted for not wanting a porn star as a role model for their daughters, or a sex object as an instructor for their sons.
Tera Myers knew it. She also knew that she should have informed the school about her past when she sought the job, but didn’t, a breach of her duty of honesty and disclosure.
She resigned. It was the right thing to do.
And the Naked Teacher Principle claims another victim.