What the hell is going on? The city's teachers are suddenly all Notes on a Scandal! There are three high-profile cases of improper student-teacher relations across the city.
Yesterday, a Brooklyn public school teacher was arrested on rape charges. Thirty-year-old Marcia Amsterdam who taught speech skills at George Gershwin Junior High was accused of raping a 13 year old boy who may have been a student. Amsterdam was relieved of her teaching duties and assigned to administrative work.
This follows the Tuesday arraignment of 23-year-old Bronx public school music teacher Emily Streb, who allegedly had sex with a 16-year-old student. Apparently school authorities suspected something was going on, but the student denied the relationship until finally admitting it to his mother. The assistant DA says that the boy, a special ed student, "suffers from psychiatric problems." Streb's lawyer says that the student confessed the affair because he "felt jilted" - but isn't having an affair with a student a no-no? Streb was arraigned on charges of third-degree rape.
And in the trial of the former Montessori principal accused of starting a relationship with a 13-year-old student 11 years ago, the accuser had difficulty remembering details while being cross-examined. Lina Sinha's lawyer Gerald Shargel managed to get the accuser, who is now a police officer, to say he couldn't remember "at least 53 times," according to the NY Times (the Times story, linked at the beginning of the paragraph, has some crazy details). Sinha's defense is that she had the relationship when the accuser turned 17, which is the age of consent.