Breast-feeding in class: A teachable moment?

September 14, 2012

Regarding Petula Dvorak’s Sept. 13 Metro column, “Breast-feeding AU professor’s reaction to criticism is lamentable”:

Right on, Ms. Dvorak. Just because you can do something doesn’t mean you should make it a “teachable moment.” One of the first things you learn before going into a classroom is to always have a backup plan. In this case, that might have been an introductory reading assignment, a short video or a writing assignment that would have allowed the professor the private time she needed to either use a breast pump or discreetly feed her hungry baby in the back of the room. There are so many possible alternatives.

Teachers who are nursing mothers at the middle school where I taught in Arlington choose to provide for their baby’s hunger by pumping in the morning before school starts, after school and possibly during the day, but never in the classroom during a class or with an open door during a planning or lunch period. I applaud the effort made by these women to be mom and teacher and to take advantage of modern ways to provide the best start to baby nutrition, which were not available to my generation.

Gail Kreider, Fairfax

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Adrienne Pine is obviously someone with a strong work ethic who will stop at nothing to get her job done. American University and her students are fortunate to have her as a professor. What better lesson for a “Sex, Gender & Culture” class?

Teresa E. Meeks, Brookeville

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