A female teacher has been jailed for kissing and groping a teenage student in her school’s storeroom.
Katie Smith, 28, from the Hunter Region of New South Wales, Australia, also admitted sending the 14-year-old boy a series of X-rated pictures on Snapchat after befriending him in late 2018.
Explaining her actions, she told her trial she just “wanted to be told she was pretty”.
She blamed her crimes on problems in her marriage.
In court, the PE teacher broke down in tears as she was sentenced to three years and 10 months in prison.
During her trial, the court was told how she first befriended the boy in the final term of 2018, and that Smith continued her interactions in the first term of the following year.
The pair kissed and groped one another on two different occasions – once in a school storeroom and once in a car park.
Smith also sent the boy photos of her breasts as well as a film of her touching herself.
The boy also sent naked snaps to the teacher, before the exchanges ended when Smith found out some of the pictures of her had been sent to other pupils at the school.
Later, the boy told his mum about the interactions and she contacted the police.
Smith pleaded guilty to charges of grooming a child for unlawful sexual activity, indecent assault of a person under 16, and intentionally sexually touching a child between 10 and 16.
She told the court she was having problems in her marriage and was seeking validation, but had never wanted to have sex with the boy.
Smith also said she had experienced eating disorders and insecurity over her appearance, saying she just “wanted to be told I was pretty”.
She added she would “do anything and everything to get attention”.
Sentencing Smith, Judge Kara Shead acknowledged the teacher suffered from a borderline personality disorder and was pursuing therapy.
But she added her conduct had been a serious breach of trust and a violation of the “absolute prohibition on sexual activity with a child”.
She said the justice system had to send a “stern message” that sexual crimes involving minors, particularly by teachers against pupils, were not acceptable.