A Lockhart High School science teacher has been arrested after being accused of having an improper relationship with a student, the Lockhart school district announced Monday.
Sarah Fowlkes, who taught anatomy and physiology, was suspended from her job. The district also was notifying the State Board for Educator Certification about the case.
The district said it first received a report about the relationship on March 10, before the start of spring break, and alerted Lockhart police and Child Protective Services.
“Lockhart parents entrust their children to us every day, and it is something we do not take lightly,” Superintendent Susan Bohn said in a statement. “The district does not and will not tolerate any improper communication or contact between a teacher and child.”
Bohn emailed Lockhart High parents on Monday to notify them of the arrest and Fowlkes’ suspension. The superintendent also asked parents to speak with their children about what happened, and asked anyone with information about the situation to contact Lockhart police.
Fowlkes, who grew up in Dripping Springs, had worked in the district since October 2014. Fowlkes previously taught third- and fifth-grade science and social studies at Plum Creek Elementary in the district, according to a cached web page that has been deleted from the district’s website. Fowlkes earned a bachelor’s degree in biology from St. Edwards University and went through the UTeach program at the University of Texas before earning an alternative teaching certification, according to that web page.
Fowlkes’ arrest comes as the number of reported cases of improper teacher-student relationships has hit record highs.
Earlier this month, former Westlake High School teacher Haeli Wey was sentenced to 10 years of probation and 200 hours of community service for engaging in sexual conduct with two students in 2015.