Canandaigua, N.Y.— In the past two and a half years, three Canandaigua Academy employees have been arrested for inappropriate contact with students.
The latest case involves Lisa Footer, 44. She is a Spanish teacher at Canandaigua Academy. The Manchester resident has been charged with third-degree sexual abuse, forcible touching and endangering the welfare of a child.
She was arrested on Wednesday, but is now out on bail and was placed on administrative leave from Canandaigua Academy.
“This is just a shock to hear that it happened again,” said Canandaigua parent Barb Barkley.
In March 2012, Thomas Spina, a Canandaigua Academy teacher’s aide, was arrested for allegedly sending sexual text messages to a 15-year-old female student.
In 2010, Marla Guerecki-Haskins, a special education teacher at the school, pleaded guilty to having sex with a 17-year-old male student in her classroom.
Lisa Footer was arrested after Canandaigua Police were notified about an alleged sexual encounter at the Byrne Dairy on South Main Street on Canandaigua around 10 p.m. on Saturday night.
Police said while Footer was arrested for this incident, they believe she was in a relationship with the student since the summer. Police said the boy was not in Footer’s class currently or in the past, but he is acquainted with Footer’s 14-year-old son who also attends Canandaigua Academy.
“We can't forget the fact that she's a teacher,” said Sgt. Scott Kadien. “It's disturbing to us and to the victim’s parents, and it’s upsetting throughout the community.”
Barkley said she doesn’t feel the problem is unique to the Canandaigua School District, but said the charges are disappointing and disturbing.
“I trust teachers and put them on a high pedestal,” said Barkley. “I mean, they're caring for our children.”
Heather Power is a substitute teacher in another district and an Ontario County resident. She said she is shocked by the allegations.
“I don't know what's going on for an adult teacher to think that they can have a mature relationship with a student,” Power said. “Just the code that we took as teachers taking care of the public’s kids…. It's just crazy. I don't know what this teacher is thinking.”
Police said some of the sexual encounters between the student and Footer may have taken place outside of Canandaigua. The Ontario County Sheriff’s Office is investigating and Footer may face more charges.