If you want to stop all these adult teacher and underaged student canoodling episodes, you could start monitoring your kids social media and email and text accounts. Or, because that’s a lot of work, you could do what Australia is doing. Nipping the illicit sexual relationships in the bud. They are now arresting teachers for ‘grooming’ students.

My Australian law degree is somewhat out of date but a quick Google search shows the term ‘grooming’ to be pretty much what you’d expect. Providing incentives or motivation of some kind to a child to engage in sexual activity. Certainly providing intoxicants or arranging for transportation. Worth noting, you don’t need to be the intended beneficiary of the sexual activity yourself to be charged with grooming. Meaning, you could be the groomer, on behalf of some other individual who would be engaging in sex with the minor.

It is an offence for an adult to intentionally procure a child for unlawful sexual activity. It is also an offence to engage in
behaviour that grooms a child for the purpose of making it easier to procure that child for unlawful sexual activity.

A 26-year old female teacher in New South Wales in Australia was arrested at her home for grooming a child between the ages of fourteen and sixteen. That carries a penalty of up to twelve years in prison. The Aussies are fairly tight lipped on names of perpetrator, victims, and any decent details outside of the charges and dates of arrest so it’s unknown if this was a male or female student. Though clearly no sexual activity had taken place or the charges would be different.

In practice, the grooming charges seem to make sense. There are similar laws in the United States though you rarely see them applied. Maybe a ton on Dateline specials. The civil libertarian in me gets a little nervous with pre-crimes or arrests for planning crimes. There would seem to be a huge area of the color gray. For instance, maybe teacher comes to the realization of what a pig she is about to become and backs out. Granted, that seems unlikely for people who are sexually impulsive enough to risk everything for gratification with a minor. Obviously, you fire a teacher who would even take the first step toward hooking up with a teen student. But do you put them in jail for a dozen years when no relations have been consummated? I love open ended questions.