A former Long Island principal allegedly had sex with a student “in a classroom setting” at a high school where she taught nearly two decades ago, according to a newly revealed state probe conducted in 2007.
Jessica Bader was promoted to principal of the James H. Vernon School in East Norwich last September but abruptly resigned the next month, prompting concern and questions from district parents.
On Friday, a News 12 Long Island investigation exposed the decade-old scandal behind her short stay as school boss.
Bader, 51, allegedly had a sexual relationship with an 18-year-old student at East Meadow High School in 2004 and 2005, according to the state’s investigation.
It included kissing and fondling “in a classroom setting,” the state probe found.
She was reassigned to an administrative role away from students and resigned shortly after in 2005.
Her teaching certification was suspended for four years but in 2013, she became assistant principal of George J. Ryan Middle School 216 in Fresh Meadows, according to an online bio.
In 2022, Bader applied to the Oyster Bay-East Norwich district.
The News 12 investigation found that she left her East Meadow out of her application and lied that her certification was never revoked.
After her mysterious resignation in October, North Shore parents demanded answers from the district.
The East Norwich district has not said whether they knew about the previous allegations before hiring her, according to reports.
During state hearings in 2007, Bader — who was not criminally charged because the student was not a minor — argued that the relationship was not inappropriate because it was consensual, the student was of legal age and not a student in any of her classes, according to the documents.
“It was a gross error in judgment to believe that it is appropriate for any teacher to kiss or fondle a student in a classroom setting, whether or not the student was in a classroom taught by that teacher or even if that student has technically reached the age of majority,” state hearing officer Patricia Rodriguez wrote.
Bader testified that she had a lapse in judgment and that she was “under stress due to the birth of twins and the demands of her personal and professional life.”
Bader did not return a call for comment.