NYC principal Sergio Herrera had sex with teacher Jessenia Zapata, threatened staff to keep mum
Herrera allegedly warned one of the staff that it wouldn't take him much time to destroy her career if she exposed his affair
QUEENS, NEW YORK CITY: Sergio Herrera, assistant principal at a Queens school in PS 197 Far Rockaway is in the midst of an ongoing investigation after the lid was blown on his affair with one of the teachers. Herrera, a married man, allegedly had sex with Jessenia Zapata in every place possible across the school during work hours. An investigation is underway in this matter and many sources which also include teachers have been speaking out about how they were threatened into silence by Herrera once he found out his secret affair was known to his staff. Teachers having sex with their students and being racist towards them has unfortunately been heard of, but an affair like this is has been unheard of in the recent past.
Zapata was responsible for outing the details of her sexual relationship with Herrera, it has been revealed during the probe. The Special Commissioner of Investigation has reportedly acquired the text messages that Zapata sent to various colleagues indicating she was having sex in the school premises during work hours. It's been revealed that Herrera and Zapata had sex everywhere - right from the library to the science labs. The last time a school principal made news for being problematic was earlier this month when Evelina Medina asked her female secretary for semi-naked photos.
"I just had sex with him in his office," Zapata allegedly texted one of her colleagues during a school day in 2019. "We're in library now. Girl it was worth the risk," she wrote in another text. On another occasion sometime in December 2019, she shot a text saying, "We just had sex in ricky's lab in the closet," according to a report. Several sources have spoken out about how their concerns have been shot down and they've been forced into silence. "This is a school run by fear," said one of the sources at PS 197 in Far Rockaway. "Everyone is scared to say anything. We don't know what else to do," the source further added.
Sources reveal Herrera and Zapata called in sick on the same day to meet at a hotel for sex. "U think people r going to talking shit if we r both out?” Herrera allegedly asked Zapata over text before their hotel date sometime in October 2019. “Idgaf anymore. Let them talk amor," Zapata replied. Several staffers are in a state of absolute dismay over the incidents that have allegedly taken place on the school premises. “How is a parent going to feel that this is going on in their kid’s school?” a teacher said. “It’s just totally inappropriate and shows that they feel like they can do anything," they added.
Herrera allegedly confronted one of his teachers in January 2020 fearing his affair with Zapata was about to be public. With Zapata present in the room, Herrera allegedly warned the crying educator that it wouldn't take him much time to destroy her career if she exposed his affair. Herrera allegedly forced the teacher to give him the names of people who knew he was engaging in sexual activities with Zapata.
The final nail for Herrera and Zapata was when the former's wife found out about his affair. Angry over the discovery, she contacted principal Christina Villavicencio in 2020, sources reveal. Concerned teachers reached out to their union representatives in the latter half of 2020 and the investigation was ordered into action in January 2021. “Our schools must be safe havens for all students and staff, and these are very troubling allegations,” said DOE spokesperson Katie O’Hanlon. “Immediately following these allegations being reported, the teacher was reassigned to a different supervisor and there is an ongoing, independent investigation to determine appropriate next steps," she added.
Herrera who went from being the technology coach to assistant principal at the NYC Department of Education still appears with Zapata on Zoom meetings related to curriculum. Zapata who allegedly has been shown favoritism at the school and appointed as grade leader of the third grade continues to maintain a close professional relationship with Herrera.