Former teacher charged with sex offense with student

Jul. 07, 2014 @ 06:09 PM

Durham County Sheriff’s Office investigators last week arrested and charged a former Durham Public Schools teacher with taking indecent liberties with a student and engaging in a sex offense with a student.

The woman charged, Michelle Smith White, 37, of Penrith Drive in Durham, was booked into the Durham County Jail Wednesday morning and was released hours later after posting a $6,000 bond.

Investigators say White began a sexual relationship with a female student -- who was 15 at the time -- in 2012 while White was a teacher at Jordan High School. White resigned from her teacher position in April of this year.

White was employed with the Durham Public Schools at Jordan High School from March 1997 until April 2014, according to information from Chrissy Pearson, chief communications officer for Durham Public Schools. White was a dance teacher for grades 9 through 12.

 “The allegations against this teacher are very serious, and all of us from the school leadership to district administration will continue to do everything we can to support the Durham Sherriff’s Office in their investigation,” Pearson said. “The physical and emotional safety of our students is our No. 1 priority.”

White’s court date has been set for Aug. 6 in Durham County’s District Court, according to online court records.

The case remains under investigation and sheriff’s detectives expect additional charges to be filed as the investigation progresses. Anyone with information about the case is asked to call the sheriff’s criminal investigations division at 919-560-0880.