Tuesday, February 17, 2015

More about the teacher at Pearl-Cohn who had "inappropriate contact" with a student

Back on November 24th I posted that a first-year female teacher at Pearl-Cohn Entertainment Magnet

Marquita Alston
High School was accused of  having sex with a male students. I had no other details at the time and that was about all I knew and I never saw a follow up.

Contacting the school system, after some delay I got more information. This is the press release the school issued at the time of the incident:
Marquita Alston, a teacher at Pearl-Cohn High School, has been accused of inappropriate contact with students. Immediately upon becoming aware of these allegations, Principal Sonia Stewart called Metro Police and Alston was placed on administrative leave. Student safety is always our No. 1 priority. MNPS is cooperating fully with Metro Police in the investigation. This is Alston’s first year with Metro Schools.
I may have jumped to conclusions when I originally reported she was "having sex" with the student. I can not find the original source of my information and reports I now read only say she had "inappropriate contact."
School officials report that Ms. Alston resigned two or three working days after the incident was reported and that the matter was turned over to Metro Police and they are investigating the matter. When police are involved, MNPS is advised not to conduct an investigation as it may interfere with the police investigation.

This story was reported in the media in more detail than I had, but my attempt to do a Google search was not successful without the name of the teacher. Below is news story that ran at the time.

Ms Alston's auto bio is still on the Peal-Cohn webpage and this is what says about herself:
My name is Marquita Alston and I am a science teacher in the AEC academy. I am from Covington, TN and this is my first year at Pearl-Cohn. I graduated with a degree in Forensic Science and Spanish from the Middle Tennessee State University. I enjoy working out, going to the movies, spending time with family and friends, and relaxing. My favorite quote is by Maya Angelou and it says, “Without courage we cannot practice any other virtue with consistency. We can’t be kind, true, merciful, generous, or honest.
On a website called "Black Planet," in 2010 she wrote:

My name is Marquita Alston. I am a college intellectual and I have nothing, but success on my mind! I am aspiring to be a doctor/medical examiner. If you would like to know more about me, just ask! I am delighted to meet you!

Ms Alston now has a resume posted online and updated Feb. 15, 2015, but of course does not mention her employment with MNPS.

It should be noted that Ms Alston has not yet been found guilty of a crime but her abrupt resignation after being charges certainly makes her look guilty.  I am perplexed as to what would cause this.  A look at her resume and statements, shows a story of someone who overcame adversity, who had high ambitions, who had had academic success in the area of science where few women excel, who considers herself an intellectual and says "I have nothing but success on my mind."

She had just graduated a few months earlier and was just starting her promising career and then had "inappropriate contact" with a student and threw it all away or certainly had a setback. I will continue to follow this story and report more details when they become available.

Teachers having sex with students appears to not be that uncommon of an occurrence and it looks like a whole lot more female teachers are having sex with male students than male teachers having sex with female students, but of course that could be a function of reporting, not what is really happening. For more of my thoughts on this issue and other examples of this type of occurrence, follow this link.

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