A female physics teacher has been kicked out of class indefinitely after having sex with a 16-year-old student.
While teaching in Northfleet, Kent, Shannon Parsons sent text messages to the child saying, “Aw I love you!”; ‘Do you want a lift? X’; and “I know we talked about meeting up this week, but I think (blank) would probably tell her dad.. I do want to see you soon, though xx x.”
In a “calculated and motivated” maneuver, the 35-year-old also befriended the child’s parents and worked to make both the child, known as Student A, and his parents dependent on her.
Parsons was convicted in March 2021 of having a relationship with the apprentice and sentenced to 12 months’ imprisonment with two years’ probation by the Maidstone Crown Court.
Shannon Parsons banned from teaching indefinitely after having sex with student
The court heard that intercourse had taken place at his home one afternoon while his parents were at work.
Parsons also received a five-year sexual harm prevention order and must be on the sex offender registry for 10 years.
At a Teaching Regulation Agency professional conduct hearing that followed her conviction, she was banned indefinitely from teaching in schools, secondary schools, youth accommodations and children’s homes in England.
When they came to a conclusion, the panelists concluded that Parsons focused on the impact her behavior had on her life rather than the student’s, and had therefore shown no real insight.
Parsons, 35, said she was friends with the pupil but “accidentally” made things worse
The report stated, “There was no indication that Ms. Parsons acted under extreme coercion, and in fact the panel found that Ms. Parsons’ actions were calculated and reasoned.
Mrs. Parsons claimed she had struck up a friendship with Student A and his parents.
‘(She) offered student A support; Student A stated that both student A and his mother became dependent on her.
“Ms. Parsons stated that the language used between her and Student A matched the language and familiarity she used with Student A’s mother.”
The report said she accepted that the language was “not appropriate” and went “way beyond the boundaries of her role,” adding: “Ms. Parsons also explained that she had never witnessed a healthy relationship, someone who did well emotionally or had a stable parent to guide her, she was no match for the position of trust assigned to her.
“Furthermore, the panel found that Ms. Parsons had not fully understood the impropriety of her actions, as evidenced by her comment that the ‘relationship (with student A) was platonic’ and that they were ‘friends.'”
A letter has been submitted to the investigation by Parsons, claiming she “unintentionally” made things worse.
She wrote, “I was clear in my mind at the time that our relationship was platonic.
‘By imprinting my own negative experiences in my teaching, I have unintentionally and unknowingly made things worse for myself and my students.
“This was dangerous and I recognize that now. My responsibilities as a teacher were vague – I wanted to help and do the right thing for the students, but by not holding myself accountable as an adult, the relationships forged were not appropriate.
“I was really struggling to tell the difference between right and wrong at this point.”
Alan Meyrick, the TRA’s managing director and speaking on behalf of the Secretary of State, relayed the panel’s ruling and reiterated the panel’s findings that a review period would be inappropriate and permanently banned her from teaching.
Mr Meyrick added: ‘In view of the seriousness of the allegations against her, I have decided that Shannon Parsons has no right to apply for reinstatement of her eligibility to teach.’
Parsons has 28 days from the date she was notified of the order to appeal the decision of the Supreme Court hearing.