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Port St. Lucie charter school teacher resigns for 'inappropriate relationship' with student, principal says

Police investigating case involving teacher at Somerset College Preparatory Academy
Somerset College Preparatory Academy, located at 725 Northwest California Boulevard in Port St. Lucie, on March 25, 2022.jpg
Posted at 10:29 AM, Mar 25, 2022
and last updated 2022-03-25 17:09:00-04

PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. — A Port St. Lucie charter school teacher has resigned for having an "inappropriate relationship" with a student, the school's principal said.

Erika Rains, the principal and co-founder of Somerset College Preparatory Academy, located at 725 Northwest California Boulevard, posted a short video on the school's Facebook page around 9 p.m. Thursday.

In the video, a visibly upset Rains said that earlier this week, the school's administration was made aware of an inappropriate relationship between a teacher and student.

Rains said the relationship violated the school's policies, and the teacher — whose name has not been released — has resigned and is no longer at the school.

"Our students' safety and well-being is our paramount concern," Rains said. "We're working to provide our families with as much information as possible."

Rains said the school immediately reported the situation to the Port St. Lucie Police Department, which is now investigating the matter. In addition, Somerset College Preparatory Academy is conducting its own investigation.

A Port St. Lucie police spokesman said the student involved is an adult, meaning at least 18 years old.

Police were informed about the relationship on Monday, and the agency's Criminal Investigation Division is "conducting a thorough investigation into this matter," the spokesman said.

"We are assisting them in their investigation, Rains said. "We are cooperating with the investigating detective, and we're going everything we can to assist to ensure that our students are safe."

Rains said the school is not aware of any other students being involved in a relationship with the teacher.

"I'm sorry," Rains said. "And I promise we took action as soon as we found out. And we will continue to do everything in our power to keep your kids safe."

According to its website, Somerset College Preparatory Academy is an A-rated "high performing charter school" serving children in grades 6 to 12.

If you have any information that can help investigators, Rains is urging parents and students to call the Port St. Lucie Police Department or the school directly.