I can’t. The unfunny kind.
Parental complaints have led Midd-West School District officials to investigate a veteran high school teacher who writes erotic romance novels under a pen name. The teacher, Judy Buranich, of Selinsgrove, has taught at Midd-West for 33 years. Under the pen name Judy Mays, she has been writing novels for a number of those years. Her books include liaisons involving werewolves, aliens and vampires and can be found in the Romance section at Waldenbooks.
Deanna Stepp, mother of a district student, said: “We are not questioning Mrs. Buranich’s teaching credentials. We are not even questioning her ability as a writer … . What we’re questioning is that the two jobs are not compatible with one another.”
Another parent, Wendy Apple, said she had Buranich as an English teacher in high school. “I thought she was a top-of-the-line teacher,” Apple said. But the erotica, she said, “is unethical, totally unacceptable. Period. It just sort of sickens and saddens me to know everybody’s sort of looking at this like, hey, this is OK.”
I can’t. A woman who has been teaching for 33 years is suddenly coming under fire for having a side job as a romance novelist? Yes, how offensive it is that an English teacher supplements her income by writing.
To the parents worried that their kids will somehow wind up reading the novels, A.) your children probably have no interest in reading romance novels, and B.) if they are interested, be happy they’re reading.
Trust me, I know a little something about education. As a senior in high school, I portrayed English teacher Albert Peterson in our production of Bye Bye Birdie. An English teacher, if I remember correctly, is “really someone.”