Ellarea Silva, a 34-year-old middle school teacher from Louisiana is behind bars after being accused of having sex with a 15-year-old student on multiple occasions. According to reports, Silva and the student had sex multiple times at her home — including when her own child was in the residence.
Silva also allegedly sent nude photos and videos to the student.
The science teacher at Northwestern Middle School in Zachary is facing charges including indecent behavior with a juvenile, felony carnal knowledge of a juvenile and oral sexual battery. She was placed on administrative leave on January 24 after she began using her personal email address to contact the student.
“Immediately, when it was brought to our attention, we reported it to law enforcement and placed the employee on administrative leave,” Zachary Schools Superintendent Scott Devillier told WAFB in a statement. “No one is covering up anything, nor sweeping anything under the rug. We are following the law; and I am unable to comment beyond this information.”
Northwestern middle school teacher Ellarea Silva is behind bars. Authorities say the 34-year-old is accused of having sex with a 15-year-old student.https://t.co/4OnI3csjui pic.twitter.com/tZzfDYJ9GY
— FOX44 Baton Rouge (@wgmbfox44) February 7, 2020
Over the course of the past year alone, a handful of teachers have been arrested on similar charges, including 25-year-old substitute teacher Alexis Mercedes Boberg in Baltimore, Beulah High School teacher Kelsie Schmidt in North Dakota, Rancocas Valley Regional High School teacher Alexandra Reiner in New Jersey, and 50-year-old Florida substitute teacher Angela Jean Stanton in Florida. Additionally, Texas teachers Meredith Null and Edna Longoria were arrested on similar charges.
As for why the number of these incidents has seemingly increased, studies suggest that smartphones are the primary reason for the spike in illicit relationships, as it allows teachers to communicate with the minors without supervision.
According to a report from the Texas Education Association, smartphones make easy for teachers to privately text and talk with students and also make it possible for teachers and students to share explicit images.