schools.jpgOakland Unified School District officials are investigating claims of sexual acts in a second-grade classroom, a district spokesman said.

Markham Elementary School principal Pam Booker received reports on Wednesday that two second-grade students had engaged in oral sex in a classroom while the teacher was allegedly present, spokesman Troy Flint said.

“(The teacher) maintains that he did not observe what is reported to have happened,” Flint said.

Students also reported a separate incident involving second-graders removing their clothes in the same classroom, he said.

The teacher is currently on administrative leave and will remain on leave pending results of the investigation, Flint said.

“We’ll investigate every angle,” Flint said. “If it proves to be true, it is a fireable offense. It is an egregious lack of supervision.”

Markham Elementary, at 7220 Krause Ave., serves students in kindergarten through fifth-grade. The second-grade class in question has 20 students, Flint said.

As soon as the incident was reported, Booker informed the parents, contacted school district officials, and mental health workers were sent to the school, he said.

Experts are at the campus today to work with the class as a whole and with individual students.

“They’re telling students that they’re not to blame, that it is natural curiosity and discussing how best to express that curiosity in the right time, place, and manner,” Flint said.

Parents are outraged, Flint said, but are cooperating with officials.

“Considering the highly sensitive nature of the incident, the response has been relatively measured,” he said. “Parents have been willing to hear what the principal has to say and are receptive to talking through their concerns.”

Oakland police spokeswoman Holly Joshi said the Police Department will be assisting the school district in the investigation.

Erika Heidecker, Bay City News

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