A female substitute teacher in Boyd Independent School District was arrested and charged with improper relationship with a student and online solicitation, both felonies, after sending nude photos to a 15-year-old student via Snapchat.
Kelcei Michelle Ferguson, 28, is the latest in a string of female educators accused of having illegal sexual contact with students and using social media to initiate criminal “relationships” with children entrusted to their care.
According to the Wise County Messenger, a school resource officer assigned to Boyd ISD learned on February 6 that a student received nude photos from Ferguson.
“The SRO working closely with Boyd ISD administrators determined the teacher and the student communicated via Snapchat,” said Wise County Sheriff Lane Akin. “According to the investigative findings, the substitute teacher sent several nude ‘snaps’ to the student.”
Ferguson was arrested Friday.
A statement released by Boyd ISD Friday evening said the district terminated the teacher’s employment on February 7 and reported the incident to the “proper authorities,” which by law must include state education officials. Failure to report sexual misconduct allegations is also a felony.
The State Board for Educator Certification has no record for Ferguson; as of publication, she is not listed in the state’s Do Not Hire Registry for non-certified school employees.
“The relationship a student has with their teacher plays a significant part in the child’s success. Unfortunately, we are seeing a rise of sexual misconduct within the school environment and the onus is on the leadership in our system,” said Chris Hopper, president of the pro-family advocacy group Texas Family Project.
Multiple female teachers are among the increasing number of “bad apples” accused of sex crimes against Texas students.
Earlier this month, Bishop CISD high school teacher Andrea Pena, 28, was arrested and charged with five felonies: improper relationship between educator and student, indecency with a child, sexual assault of a child, online solicitation of a minor, and tampering with evidence.
“A lot of people knew, but no one reported it,” a student told local media.
Last month, New Caney ISD teacher and coach Samantha Cummings, 35, was arrested for improper relationship between an educator and student.
Also in January, a female teacher in Boerne ISD resigned over accusations of an improper relationship with a student after she acknowledged communicating inappropriately with students through text messages and social media.
In December 2022, yet another female educator, 32-year-old Beaumont ISD high school teacher Ikeyia Javea Roberts, was arrested for engaging in sexual intercourse with a male student. The boy told authorities he and his teacher were dating.
Other women recently accused or convicted of having sex with students:
- Hale Center ISD teacher Amy Gilly, 46, was charged with having an improper relationship with a 15-year-old student. The two had been texting each other and reportedly had a sexual encounter in Gilly’s vehicle.
- Comal ISD teacher Emily Anderson, 35, pleaded guilty to having sex with a 15-year-old student in a biology classroom closet. The boy’s mother had found sexually explicit text messages from the teacher on her son’s phone
- Tomball ISD intermediate school teacher Marka Bodine, 32, admitted she had a three-year sexual relationship with a student starting when he was just 13. Police said Bodine used social media and text messages to groom the boy.
A number of Texas teachers have used the internet to initiate criminal sexual contact with students. One state lawmaker has proposed banning access to social media for children younger than 18.
Under Texas law, it’s a crime for any public or private school employee to engage in sexual contact with a student, and for any adult to solicit a minor for sexual activity using the internet or other electronic messaging.
An improper relationship between an educator and a student is a second-degree felony. Online solicitation of a minor is a third-degree felony; if the minor is younger than 14 years of age, the crime is a second-degree felony.
“What we are seeing over and over again is an evil creep into our schools,” Hopper said. “When you mix untrustworthy teachers and over-sexualized kids, bad things happen.”
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