MIAMI (WSVN) - A South Florida schoolteacher is facing some serious charges after, police said, she carried on a sexual relationship with a 17-year-old student for two years.
7News cameras captured 30-year-old Valeria Costadoni as she bonded out of jail, Monday night. Costadoni, who is an English teacher at Miami Arts Charter School, had her head covered with a jacket as she left the premises accompanied by a friend. She declined to comment.
Hours earlier, she appeared in court, where she was charged with lewd and lascivious battery on a child.
Miami-Dade Circuit Judge Mindy Glazer ordered the teacher to refrain from any communication with the student. “No contact with the victim, either directly, indirectly, in person, in writing, by telephone or through third parties,” said Glazer.
According to the arrest report, the student told investigators that the sex was consensual with Costadoni, who is originally from Paraguay and moved to Miami in the early 1990s.
Other students at the school told 7News they are shocked.
“She is so nice,” said Hanna Derje.
“Most of the time you think a person is so nice, so I thought she was really nice, and then when I heard about the news I was like really in shock,” said a student.
“She was an incredible teacher. Like the best language arts teacher I ever had. I’m honestly in complete shock,” said another student. “Everyone was just shocked. Like yesterday I come out of school and that happened, so I don’t know, I’m still like traumatized right now.”
“Especially since she was our vice principal last year. That’s so crazy,” said Farah Rincon. “I would never expect that, but I guess a lot of mistakes happen.”
Detectives said the teen told them he had sex with Costadoni at her home about four times. He said they also had sex in her car and at his home.
The student also told investigators that on many different occasions, the teacher performed oral sex on him in a classroom at the school when no one else was there.
Costadoni refused to speak with detectives without an attorney.
Miami Arts Charter School head Alfred De La Rosa released a statement that read, in part, “As always, we are committed to doing all we can to maintain student safety and the well-being of our students at all times. The teacher has been removed from the school and our staff shall be standing by to offer student support, guidance and counseling as may be necessary.”
De la Rosa said parents were notified about Costadoni’s arrest.
“I don’t even know what to think. She’s such a great teacher,” said Joel Enamorado. “I learned a lot from her. She was not just a good teacher, but you could talk to her about problems. I don’t know. She seems like a completely different person.”
“She used to be our vice principal, and then she went back to being a teacher,” said student Dalingela Bernadin, “and that it was happening for two years at the school, and I’ve been here for like four years, and I never like thought about that. Especially her — she looked like someone who would never do that.”
Student Mahoro Amani said Costadoni and the student should be held accountable for their actions. “I think it was a misjudgment of the characters, of the teacher and the student,” she said. “They are obviously going to be in some big trouble, and I think they deserve that.”
Police have not said how they learned about the alleged sexual relationship between the teacher and student.
Costadoni’s bond was set at $15,000. She bonded out hours later.
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