Another American teacher-student sex romp is making worldwide headlines.
This time, the educator is Meredith Powell, a 24-year-old math teacher at Lincoln High School in Tacoma, Wash.
Powell stands accused of engaging in oral sex and other sexual acts behind the locked door of her classroom with two different male students, reports local CBS affiliate KIRO-TV.
The students were either 15 or 16 year of age.
Police say she also sent at least one racy Snapchat photo of herself lounging in the bathtub to a third underage male student.
According to the Daily Mail, Powell has confessed to the charges against her.
Powell, who has taught in the Tacoma Public Schools district since 2012, was busted after district officials received an anonymous tip. They forwarded the tip to local police.
Police say the trysts began after a drunken Powell responded to a text from a former student one night, reports The News Tribune. The student told Powell he was “turned on thinking about her.” She replied that “he was hot, too.”
Apparently, and not surprisingly, the unnamed student then began making frequent visits to Powell’s classroom—so much so that his girlfriend grew jealous.
On Monday, the math teacher wrote a letter to the girlfriend apologizing for “promiscuous” and “unprofessional” text messages.
It’s not clear how the other two male teenagers factor in but, according to the Mail, Powell admitted to engaging in oral sex and other sexual activities with the students at various times in the month of January.
Dan Voelpel, a spokesman for the Tacoma school district, told KIRO that the district will now offer counseling to any male teenagers who had sex with their 24-year-old female math teacher.
“We always reach out to any victims or alleged victims to find out what kinds of services and support they might need,” Voelpel explained.
Voelpel also said that the district had initially placed Powell on paid leave. Then, after she was arrested and booked, officials placed her on unpaid leave.
Police booked Powell into Pierce County Jail Thursday afternoon.
Powell told police that she understands that what she did was wrong. She said she would like to tell the students’ parents that she is sorry.
At her first court appearance on Friday, she was charged with two counts of third-degree child rape and a single count of communication with a minor for immoral purposes.
A Facebook page called “Free Powell” has sprung up in support of the embattled math teacher.
Comments on the page are decidedly mixed.
Powell’s detractors call her “child molesting scum!” and say, “Kids have been traumatized for life.”
Powell’s supporters say she is “a caring and amazing math teacher” — “the best math teacher ever,” in fact — and “she needs all the support she can get right now.”