A high school teacher at a local charter school in Exton, Pennsylvania has been arrested and charged with roughly a dozen crimes related to sexual abuse of one of her students. According to the charter school’s employee contact list for the prior school year, the teacher was a high school language arts teacher.
The arrest was made after the teacher was found with the student in a car. The student told police that he’d been “involved” with his teacher for several months. It’s alleged that the teacher had sexual and physical contact with the student both on and off school grounds. It’s unclear how old the student was when the “relationship” began.
The teacher faces multiple counts of the crime of institutional sexual assault, unlawful sexual contact with a minor. She also faces charges of endangering the welfare of a child and corruption of minors. All charges are graded as felonies in the third degree.
This isn’t the first time a Chester County, PA teacher faces charges for sexually abusing a student. Last month, a high school teacher at another private school in Chester County was arrested for sexual abuse of a student. Read about that case here.
The Problem of Sex Abuse in Schools
Sexual assault and abuse in school settings is nothing new, especially in Pennsylvania. In fact, in the last few years, dozens of Pennsylvania teachers, coaches and other school employees have faced criminal charges for sexual abuse of a student. It’s a problem that seems to be growing and garnering significant media attention.
Educators who sexually abuse students face steep criminal penalties and may also be sued in civil courts. Lawsuits may be filed against the sexual perpetrators as well as the schools or institutions which harbored them. If school administrators or fellow teachers/coaches have knowledge of abuse and fail to take reasonable action to report it or address it, the school may be held liable in a subsequent civil lawsuit. The student and the parents may be able to make claims for financial compensation. In addition, claims for punitive damages are often appropriate, i.e., claims which seek to punish the defendant for especially wrongful actions.
More from our School Sex Abuse Law Library:
- Evidence Required to Win a School Sex Abuse Lawsuit in Pennsylvania (September 23, 2014) Learn how evidence of prior notice or knowledge affects the success of a civil school sex abuse lawsuit in Pennsylvania. What constitutes prior notice or knowledge?
- Sexual Abuse-Assault Lawsuits Against Private Schools in Pennsylvania – Negligence (September 9, 2014) Get legal info about civil lawsuits for sex abuse of students at private schools in Pennsylvania. Public and private schools are treated differently in civil sex abuse-assault lawsuits under federal and state law.
- Parents Alert: Sexual Abusers Often Give Victims Drugs & Alcohol (March 29, 2013) Sexual predators, including school employees, often ply victims with drugs and alcohol. Get tips on how to monitor your children.
Pennsylvania Municipal Court Public Court Summary 15-1-01, Accessed July 15, 2015