My question involves education law in the State of: Washington
My girlfriend is a middle school math teacher, grade 7 and 8. She's had a couple classes this year that have been horrible, conduct wise. Last week there was a student that accused her of swearing in class and reported it to the administration. She denies ever swearing in class and for good reason, she hates swearing in general and never does it around children.
She was berated by the administration and was told they will investigate to find out the truth. Well, since then her class has become unruly and the some of the kids' conduct continues to be horrible. She has been in fear for months that these kids will destroy her career with false accusations (I have sat in on one of her classes and can attest these kids have no respect for her and misbehave just for the heck of it).
This morning she decided to put a small digital video recorder in the back of the classroom to record their conduct in an effort to protect herself. During class a student noticed the camera and freaked out. The student ran off to the administration to alert them, who subsequently came to the class and confiscation the camera.
My girlfriend has to meet with the administration after school and does not know what is going to happen. She is terrified of what is going to happen. I advised her to go talk to her union rep ASAP and find out what protection she has. We don't know what the legal ramifications will be.
Is it legal for a teacher to record her class if there is no intent to make the recordings public and are for her and the schools review of class conduct?