A Foothill Ranch Middle School teacher has recently been accused of lewd conduct with a student (CA Penal Code 288) . Social media seems to have been the key to the allegations at hand. Local law enforcement agents became involved after being alerted by members of the Twin Rivers Unified School District. At this point, the teacher has not been arrested, these are only accusations that will soon either be borne out or proven to be untrue.
The phrase ‘inappropriate conduct with a student’ is, in fact, quite vague and it is difficult to tell what penalties, legal or otherwise, might ensue if the individual teacher in question is in fact arrested. According to professional standards set forth in the California School Board Association’s literature, ‘inappropriate conduct’ could mean any of the following: endangering a student, discriminating against a student, harassing a student, physically or sexually abusing a student, possessing pornographic images on school property, using ‘profane, obscene, or abusive language,’ making loud noises, or using tobacco, drugs, or other illegal substances at school.
There is no way to determine what this teacher has actually done to land him or herself in the crosshairs of an investigation. Furthermore, if and when there are charges brought against anyone in this case, it will be difficult to prove whether or not the reports on social media are correct. In addition, whether the school district chooses to suspend or fire the teacher, the student or students involved could, nonetheless, bring a civil case against the individual. In any case, it is certain that California law is not clear when it comes to all relationships and behavior between teachers and students.