There have been recent series of sexual abuse arrests have been causing alarm throughout the New York City school system. Four times : that’s how many times this month that a New York City public school employee has been charged with a sex crime against a student.
Chukwuma Duru, a 27-year-old substitute teacher had been accused last month of forcible touching and endangering the welfare of a child. It is being reported by police that the incident happened at he Bronx Career and College Prep High School.Duru was arrested four days after the incident.
“Our schools cannot be safe zones for pedophiles,” Sen. Eric Adams stated. “It must be safe zones for children.” Last month police arrested Tyleek Brooks, also known as Taleek Brooks, on Feb. 7. Police say Brooks had videos that allegedly showed him sexually abusing at least two children inside a classroom at P.S. 243 in Brooklyn.
Gregory Atkins, another teacher’s aide, was arrested on Feb. 10. He’s also accused of sexually abusing a student at P.S. 87 on the Upper West Side.
Then last week, Wilbert Cortez, a 49-year-old computer teacher at P.S. 174, was charged with two counts of second-degree course of sexual conduct against a child and two counts of endangering the welfare of a child.
Schools Chancellor Dennis Walcott has been addressing community concerns over the recent spate of arrests. More than 100 angry parents met with Walcott last Friday.
Walcott also put out a letter outlining policy changes, which include making sure schools can easily identify teachers who have been previously disciplined when they’re looking to hire.
Walcott says his staff will also dig through records of substantiated complaints of misconduct and “take appropriate action where necessary.”