The recent news involving teachers in New Jersey and Pennsylvania is quite alarming. Late last month, two teachers were charged with sex offenses related to students; one in Pennsylvania and the other in New Jersey.
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Pennsylvania Middle School Teacher Arrested for Having Sex with 15 Year Old Girl
A Delaware County middle school teacher in the Garnet Valley School District has been arrested and charged with multiple sex offenses involving a 15 year old high school student. The teacher is a gym teacher/coach at the middle school in Glen Mills, Pennsylvania which is located roughly 30 miles outside of Philadelphia. Glen Mills is a mostly quiet, middle class suburb of Philadelphia.
These sexual abuse allegations have rocked the area because the teacher is well-known in the community for his young daughter’s fight with brain cancer. According to police, the teacher met the student when she was in middle school and recently began communicating inappropriately via text messages. A video on a local news website captured his arrest and indicated that police have further alleged that girl sent nude photos to the father and coach, and eventually the sexual contact occurred in the coach’s office.
Maplewood, NJ High School Teacher Charged with Sexual Assault of 3 Students
Also last month, a high school teacher in Maplewood, New Jersey was arrested and charged with sexual assault of three students. Maplewood is a suburb of Newark, New Jersey, just outside of New York. This isn’t the first time a high school teacher was involved in a sex abuse scandal involving a student. Several years ago, in 2006, a high school English teacher pleaded guilty to sexual abuse of a 16 year old student.
The allegations involve three 15 year old students and sexual contact which occurred on school property and in the teacher’s car.* Since the teacher’s arrest, two more students have come forward; additional charges are expected to be filed shortly.
What Causes Teachers to Commit Sexual Abuse of Teenaged High School Students?
Both of these teachers had children and are in their mid to late 30s. In addition, in both of these cases, the victims were high school students. In addition, over the last few years, multiple teachers in Pennsylvania and New Jersey, also in their 30s, have been arrested, charged and convicted of sexually abusing or assaulting high school students. There is an alarming trend here – 30 something year old adults who have access to young, impressionable teens.
So, what on earth leads a teacher to risk their family, job and potentially their freedom, to engage in sexual activity with a student? The answer is two-fold, impulse control and fear of aging. Basically, 30 something year old adults are entering the period of middle age. The basic fear of aging and being surrounded by young teens often lead to this type of impulsive, criminal behavior. Teachers who engage in criminal sexual acts with students often rationalize the acts because they believe they are on the same level as their victims, mentally and emotionally.
- Open Letter to an Educator Who Takes Advantage of a High School Student Earlier this month, a high school teacher and coach in Oregon pleaded guilty to sexual contact with a former student of his, who was 17 years old when the sexual contact began. During sentencing, the teacher basically refused to accept responsibility for his actions and stated that the sexual contact was “mutual.” That statement deserves …
- Teachers & Sexual Abuse of High School Students Over the past few months, there has been an alarming number of reports across the country of teachers who begin “relationships” with older high school students. Pennsylvania is no exception. This year, there have been several teacher-student school sex abuse scandals. Just last month, a …
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http://www.nbcphiladelphia.com, Pennsylvania Gym Teacher, Father of Girl With Cancer, Has Sex With Teenage Student: Police
http://www.nj.com, Maplewood teacher accused of sexually assaulting three students