Lesbian games teacher jailed for having sex with 15-year-old pupil at private girls’ school

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A teacher at an all-girls public school has been jailed for 15 months for conducting a secret sexual relationship with a pupil.

Emily Fox, who taught PE at the Royal Masonic School for Girls in Rickmansworth, Hertfordshire, exchanged hundreds of “sexually explicit” messages with the 15-year-old girl.

The pair struck up a friendship in November 2012 but from Easter 2013 developed an “intense” bond that involved kissing and later sexual touching, a court heard.

At one point the girl told the teacher she “loved her as a friend”.

The relationship was discovered in August last year when a revealing email was printed out inadvertently and seen by the parents of the victim, who cannot be named for legal reasons.

Fox, 26, from Bath, pleaded guilty last month to four counts of engaging in sexual activity with a child while in a position of trust.

The first count relates to “touching by kissing”, the second to “intentional touching of the child’s breasts” and the remaining two to “digital penetration each to the other”, St Albans Crown Court heard.

Fox looked upwards in the dock as Judge Stephen Gullick passed sentence, telling her he had no doubt she was a “gifted and well-loved” teacher.

But he said: “In my judgment, you were always aware that the relationship was not only wrong but also unlawful.”

He said the sexual relationship lasted three or four months.

The judge said the teacher’s reputation was “in tatters”, and he accepted a jail term would be “extremely difficult”.

But he stressed that “this type of behaviour towards pupils by teachers” must be seen as “extremely grave”.

He sentenced Fox to concurrent sentences of one month on count one, six months on count two and 15 months on counts three and four.

Fox, who started working at the school in 2010, was charged after she attended a police station by appointment in September last year.

Dee Connelly, mitigating, said she had shown a “degree of bravery” in admitting the offences and felt “remorse and contrition”.

She had wanted to be a teacher from a young age and accepts her “cherished” career is now ruined, the barrister said.