Teacher Accused Of Inappropriate Behavior With Student

Recent Allegations Against Teachers Make Headlines

A central Indiana teacher is under investigation over accusations of inappropriate behavior with a female student.

A graphic arts teacher at Jay County High School in Portland, resigned Tuesday.

The Sheriff's Department is investigating the allegations. RTV6 does not name individuals until they have been arrested.

The investigation came just days after Indianapolis charter school teacher Bruce Ryan was accused of sexual misconduct.

"There seems to be a great number lately," said Sandy Ruckle, director of programs for Prevent Child Abuse Indiana. "Not just in our state, but nationwide. Not just with male perpetrators, but also with females too."

Clinical psychologist DeAnn Harvey said the unnerving trend is fueled by social media websites and texting, RTV6's Kara Kenney reported.

"That access was never there a long time ago," Harvey said. "The relationship had to start in public in the past. Now, it doesn’t. It can start privately online and then proceed, and in that case, it's getting worse and happening more often."

Harvey and Ruckle also credited increased awareness for a bump in reporting inappropriate incidents.

"People are aware. They're more educated," Ruckle said. "Hopefully it's being less tolerated, so people are being reported for it."

"I think people are reporting it more now because it is an abuse, and they know something has to be done," Harvey said.

Medical experts said that parents need to be even more vigilant and educate their children about boundaries.

Red flags include spending more time at school with a particular teacher and logging more hours online and on the phone.

“Pay attention to Facebook and pay attention to text messages, and ask questions." Ruckle said. "All of these things are important. Stay involved in your child's life and find out what's going on."

The Indiana State Teachers Association disputed incidents are on the rise and maintains cases are rare.

The Indiana Department of Education does not track incidents with teachers, but it does conduct its own investigation into inappropriate conduct and determines whether a teacher's license should be suspended or revoked.

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