Teacher jailed for sex with pupils
A music teacher who had drink-fuelled sex sessions with two teenage pupils at her home was jailed for 30 months today.
Married mother-of-three Jennifer Philp-Parsons, 45, flirted and plied the 16-year-olds with alcohol at parties she hosted at her house before having sex with them.
Exeter Crown Court heard she seduced the first boy on a sofa bed in the lounge while her husband slept upstairs at their home in Exmouth, Devon.
Weeks later, the teacher threw a second party - this time while her husband was away - and had sex with the first boy in her marital bed.
An hour later - when the first boy had gone to a shop to buy food with money Philp-Parsons had given him - she seduced the second boy and had sex with him as well.
The first boy returned to the house and heard his teacher and his friend upstairs engaged in intercourse.
The mornings after both parties, Philp-Parsons took the boys for breakfast, the court was told.
At a previous hearing, Philp-Parsons, who was head of music at a Devon school, admitted three charges of sexual activity with a male aged 13 to 17 while in a position of trust in May and June this year.
Judge Francis Gilbert QC, The Recorder of Exeter, said Philp-Parsons's offending was so serious that prison was the only option.
"You have committed very serious sexual offences with two 16-year-olds who were at the school in which you were a teacher," the judge said.
"The details reveal very serious offences involving you seducing two students of your own school in your own home for your own sexual gratification.
"On the first occasion, you plied them with drink while your husband was upstairs.
"On the second, you had sexual intercourse with both boys in a short space of time."
The judge added: "These circumstances were sordid and adulterous.
"Quite what effects they have had upon these two boys is hard to predict."
Philp-Parsons was also placed on the sex offenders' register and made the subject of a sexual offences prevention order, both indefinitely.
Prosecutor Emily Pitts told the court how Philp-Parsons regularly gave one of the victims lifts to and from school and also took them for meals.
She also provided a kettle and toaster for them in the music room at the school.
Describing the first party, Miss Pitts said: "The defendant's husband returned home and went upstairs to bed.
"There came a time when the first boy was alone with the defendant while he was watching a film on her sofa bed.
"She pulled up his t-shirt and stroked his stomach while commenting on his physique.
"She began touching him and she removed his clothing and they had sexual intercourse.
"She took the boy and others out for breakfast.
"She would drive him to school and would take him for treats."
Miss Pitts said the second party took place a few weeks later.
"The second boy was drinking soft drinks and describes how the defendant was trying to add alcohol to his drinks," she told the court.
She said that the two victims and a third boy found themselves in Philp-Parsons' bedroom with her.
The first victim was left alone with the defendant and she seduced him and they had sex again, Miss Pitts said.
"He was feeling quite angry because he didn't want to have sex with her because he had a girlfriend."
Miss Pitts said he and his friend left the house to get food and when they returned they heard the Philp-Parsons having sex with the second victim.
"They could hear sexual noises coming from the bedroom," she said.
"The first boy describes being angry and upset because it was only an hour since he had sexual intercourse with her."
The second boy said that he was watching a film downstairs when Philp-Parsons seduced him and took him upstairs to the bedroom.
"He said he felt pressured as it was her home but didn't know what else to do," Miss Pitts said.
The boy said that while he was upstairs he got a telephone call from the first victim and then he went downstairs to meet him.
Philp-Parsons was arrested at the school after a member of the public reported rumours to the police.
The court heard she made no comment in her first police interview.
She told detectives: "I looked after them like my own children.
"This is bulls***."
But in a second interview, she admitted she had slept with the two teenagers, who cannot be identified for legal reasons.
Even after Philp-Parsons pleaded guilty before Exeter Magistrates' Court last month, she continued to send text messages to the first boy - breaching her bail conditions.
The mother of the first boy has been left devastated after learning of what happened, the court said.
"She describes being utterly appalled, shocked and heartbroken," Miss Pitts said.
"They feel betrayed as parents because they put their trust in the education system.
"They said she put her sexual needs first, describing it as every parent's worst nightmare."
The mother of the second boy is "utterly disgusted" at Philp-Parsons' behaviour, Miss Pitts said.
"She only cares for her own selfish, perverted needs," she said.
Richard Crabb, defending, said Philp-Parsons had the support of her husband and family who were in court to see her sentenced.
"There are no winners in a case like this," he said.
"The defendant at the age of 45 finds herself in the dock at the crown court for the first time in her life, having brought shame and embarrassment to her family.
"Nothing can excuse that sort of behaviour and she understands the court will take that view."
Mr Crabb said Philp-Parsons had been married for 18 years, had three children and been a teacher for 10 years.
"She loved teaching music and she worked very hard at it," he said.
"She found it stressful but very rewarding."
Mr Crabb said there were already problems in Philp-Parsons's marriage and she felt isolated and lonely at home and had been proscribed anti-depressants.
"She knows it was wrong and she utterly regrets what she did at the parties," he said.
"She wishes she could turn the clock back but knows she can't.
"The consequences of her actions have already had devastating consequences for both her and her family.
"She has lost her job and she will never work as a teacher again and not surprisingly her marriage is in further difficulty."
A spokesman for the school said: "The head of music was suspended immediately these allegations came to light.
"The governors of the school moved swiftly to take disciplinary action and she has now been dismissed."