Hoffman Estates teacher won't be charged for taking in student

Updated 1/13/2012 8:45 AM

Police are not filing charges against a Hoffman Estates High School teacher who resigned in November over allegations that a male student lived in her apartment for a month.

In November, Hoffman Estates police announced they were investigating whether an inappropriate relationship existed between the teacher and student. The Department of Child and Family Services had concluded that there was reasonable cause to suspect a sexual relationship.


Sgt. Darin Felgenhauer of the Hoffman Estates Police Department said the case was closed Wednesday and no charges would be filed. He would not comment on the specifics of the investigation, saying only that the teacher was not being charged because police did not find "any violations of criminal code." He said the case had been open since Sept. 22.

School officials were notified Sept. 13 that a teacher and student were living together. The student's belongings were removed from the teacher's home two days later. The school district placed her on administrative leave without pay on Sept. 22 and formally suspended her on Nov. 7. On Nov. 10, the teacher resigned.

District 211 spokesman Tom Petersen declined to comment on the police investigation. The Daily Herald isn't releasing the name of the 36-year-old teacher because she has not been charged with a crime.

According to school documents, the teacher said the student moved in with her about a week before the 2011-12 school year started with the approval of his mother, who moved out of the district.

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The teacher told school officials she had been tutoring the student and when the student learned his mother was planning to move, he became worried he would fall behind in school without the teacher's help. The teacher agreed to let the student live with her for the school year, and she provided him with financial support, food, clothes and a car.

School district officials and the student's friends were not told of the arrangement because "others would assume that something improper was taking place," according to the documents.

The teacher insisted during interviews with school officials that the physical relationship between her and the student never went further than a good-night hug.

Felgenhauer said unless additional evidence comes to light, the case is closed.

Illinois State Board of Education spokeswoman Mary Fergus said a decision on whether to revoke the woman's teaching license has not been made and the board's investigation remains open.

DCFS spokesman Kendall Marlowe said the teacher's name will remain on a state central database of individuals DCFS deems to be perpetrators of abuse and neglect for 50 years. The list, while not public, is open to child welfare officials, law enforcement and certain employers, including schools and day care centers.

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