Sarah Katherine Brooks, a 25-year-old high school teacher in Georgia, has been arrested and charged after she allegedly had an illicit sexual relationship with a teenage student.
According to reports, Brooks — who was a teacher at Archer High School — turned herself into the Gwinnett County sheriff’s office around 4 p.m. local time on Friday, March 15.
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports that Brooks, who was a physical education teacher at Archer High School, had sex with the unidentified 17-year-old teen “at least three times since October.”
After turning herself in, Brooks was booked into the Gwinnett County Detention Center and charged with sexual assault by persons with supervisory or disciplinary authority.
She was released on $11,200 bond that same day and subsequently resigned from her position at Archer High School.
In a statement, Archer High School principal Ken Johnson said that the trust the community places in them is “not something we [the school] take for granted.”
“While this is not a situation we have experienced at our school previously, one time is too many. Ethics matter, and the trust our community places in its educators matters to Archer and to Gwinnett County Public Schools. This is not something we take for granted,” Principal Johnson’s statement read.
Brooks is just the latest in a string of education officials to be arrested and charged for sex-related crimes.
Since the beginning of 2019 alone, a handful of teachers have been arrested on similar charges, including Beulah High School teacher Kelsie Schmidt in North Dakota, Rancocas Valley Regional High School teacher Alexandra Reiner in New Jersey, and 50-year-old Florida substitute teacher Angela Jean Stanton in Florida. Additionally, Texas teacher Meredith Null was arrested on similar charges.
As for why there has been an increase in teacher’s being charged with sex-related crimes over recent years, studies suggest that smartphones are the primary reason for the spike in illicit relationships, as it allows teachers to communicate with the minors without supervision.
According to a report from the Texas Education Association, smartphones make easy for teachers to privately text and talk with students and also make it possible for teachers and students to share explicit images.
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