Well, it's happened again. In what sounds like every high school boy's dream and every mother's nightmare, Stacy Schuler, a teacher in Mason, Ohio, has been accused of sleeping with her students -- five of them in a five-month period -- and buying them alcohol too. In court Friday, the 32-year-old was charged with 16 counts of sexual battery and three offences involving an underage person.
She taught physical education and health, and if proven true, what a horrible lesson she taught. Because hot-for-teacher dream or not, an adult in a position of authority having sex with a child about half her age is warped and wrong. But it keeps happening.
What is wrong with these women?
Mary Kay Latourneau was the first big case of notoriety, and since then headlines have been filled with similar stories. In Cleveland last week teacher Kristen Ross was sentenced to two years in jail for having sex with a 14-year-old student. In Colorado Courtney Bowles was recently charged with sexual assault after being caught doing inappropriate things in a car with one of her students. And on and on and on.
The fact that after serving her prison sentence Latourneau is now married to her former student and bragging about being a grandmother to the child of her son who's only a year younger than her husband, certainly doesn't do a lot to dissuade others from following in her footsteps. She has no regrets, and perhaps these women don't believe they will either due to their own desperation, or immaturity, or whatever it is that drives them do this.
And yes plenty of male teachers have preyed on students as well, which is just as wrong, but it's the women's actions I have the most difficult time wrapping my head around. Perhaps because I'm a woman, and I can't ever imagine crossing such a sacred line between adult and child.
These cases also make me wonder just how often similar scenarios are happening in schools across the country in cases that are never revealed? As a parent they frighten me. You so hope for teachers in your child's life that are passionate, who love what they do, and who really take an interest in your children. To think that they could take that trust and twist it in such a way is infuriating.
Schuler turned herself in on Friday after someone called in an anonymous tip last month and she was placed on administrative leave. She's currently in jail awaiting trial later this month, and the Board of Education will hold a meeting Tuesday to determine if she will lose her job or not.
I guess she's innocent until proven guilty, but it will be shocking if they do anything but fire her based on what's come to light so far. I hope if Schuler is found guilty that she serves every one of the 81 years of prison time she faces and sends a strong message that this isn't okay and won't be tolerated in our schools by any teacher.
Do you worry about your children having inappropriate relationships with their teachers?
Image via Sister72/Flickr