4th-Graders Were Pen-Pals ... With Child Molester

Laura Perry accused of letting students write to Rickey R. Rowlett
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 12, 2012 1:02 PM CDT
A teacher is accused of letting her fourth-graders communicate with a convicted child molester.   (Shutterstock)

(Newser) – Today's Terrible Teacher Award goes to Laura Perry, who set her class of fourth-graders up to be pen-pals with … a convicted child molester. Lawsuits have been filed and officials are investigating the situation at Houston's Trinity Lutheran Church and School after finding out students were corresponding with Rickey R. Rowlett, who was convicted of repeated sexual assaults of a girl under 14. Perry and Rowlett are apparently family friends, and Perry told her class Rowlett was wrongly accused of the crime.

"It's very alarming," the district attorney says—and that may be a bit of an understatement, considering the kids gave Rowlett detailed information about themselves and said they wanted to meet him when he was released. Perry is no longer on staff and the principal, who allegedly knew about the pen-pal project, has been placed on administrative leave. And just when you thought the situation couldn't get worse: Students also allegedly had contact with Perry's husband, who has been charged with promoting and possessing child porn. Blake Perry, 23, may have even helped to coach soccer at the school, the Houston Chronicle reports.

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