Rowena Short, a Sarasota school registrar, was fired after a suggestive Snapchat video leaked that shows her dancing with a 17-year-old high school student in the frame.
According to The Sarasota Herald-Tribune, the Riverview High School student appears to have an “alcoholic drink in his hand,” raising further concern. Short is just the latest in a string of female teachers accused of inappropriate behavior with a student, although, in this case, the boy denied that he had a relationship with Short in any way.
Here’s what you need to know:
1. The Caption on the Snapchat Video Read ‘My Girl’
The Sarasota Herald-Tribune newspaper published a copy of the Snapchat video on YouTube. “The Snapchat video, taken Jan. 14, shows a woman deputies have identified as 39-year-old Rowena Short, dancing on a counter-top above a 17-year-old Riverview student, who takes a sip from a bottle in his hand and smiles as Short covers the camera with her hand,” the newspaper wrote in the caption.
The video is captioned, “My girl,” the newspaper further notes. The Sarasota County Sheriff’s Department initially released the video. According to MySuncoast, officials launched an investigation to determine whether there was an inappropriate relationship between Short and the youth in the Snapchat video. However, when they reached the student, he denied having a relationship with Short and claimed he could not remember who gave him alcohol, the news site reports.
2. The Party Was Allegedly Held at the Home of Another School Official
The plot thickened when authorities traced the scene in the video to a party in a house. The kicker was whose house it allegedly appeared to be.
According to The Herald Tribune, the Sarasota County Sheriff’s Office allegedly discovered that the party “was held at a home in the 4000 block of Thames Lane, matching the residence of Sarasota High assistant principal Bethany King.” King has now been assigned to the administration office as authorities continue to investigate, the newspaper reported.
The school district told Bradenton.com that King “was the host of the birthday party that day at her house.”
3. The Student Claimed He Found the Party on an App
The youth in question told authorities that he found the party through “941 Party” on Snapchat, “which he said gives locations of parties in the area,” reported Bradenton.com.
He did not recall whose house it was because he was too drunk, the newspaper reports. However, the mother of the boy looked at the video and told police “it would be a stretch to think there was an inappropriate relationship,” and she did not desire further action, according to Bradenton.com.
4. Rowena Short, Who Was Fired, Was Still in Her Probationary Period
It didn’t take long for school authorities to take action against Short. According to UK Daily Mail, Short “was five months into a six-month probationary period with Sarasota High School when she was fired.”
The boy has not been identified because he is underage.
5. Multiple Female Teachers in the United States Have Been Accused of Inappropriate Behavior With Students
Over the past two years, many female teachers have been accused of having sex or an inappropriate relationship with a high school student, although, in the Short case, the boy denies that such behavior occurred. Dori Myers, a teacher in the Bronx, was accused of having oral sex with a juvenile, charges she denies.
Cassandra White, an English teacher in Oklahoma, is even accused of taking out a marriage license with a teenage boy. Hunter Day, an Oklahoma teacher, was accused of sending nude photos to a student. Among other recent cases: Loryn Barclay, a former substitute teacher at a Missouri High School, was accused of having sexual contact multiple times with a 17-year-old boy. Shawnetta Reece, a gym teacher from Georgia, was accused of having an inappropriate relationship with a 15-year-old boy.
Tracy Miller, a West Virginia teacher, was accused of sending nude photos to students. Nataly Lopez, a 27-year-old former substitute teacher at a middle school in New Jersey, was accused of having sexual contact with a student. Lindsey Jarvis, a 27-year-old middle school teacher’s aide, was accused of the rape and sodomy of a student who was under the age of 16. Jarvis was arrested in Fayette County, Kentucky, on June 16. Then there’s Laura Ramos. She is a 31-year-old Connecticut high school teacher who is accused of having sex with a special education student. And there’s Tiffany Geliga.