A junior school teacher has been banned from teaching after he pleaded guilty to drink-driving and being in the possession of a Class A drug.
Iain Gilmour, 46, was a teacher of “previous good history” before he was caught behind the wheel while nearly twice the legal alcohol limit and in possession of cocaine, a professional conduct panel of the Teaching Regulation Agency heard.
The offences were committed in the early hours of 25 January last year during a period when Gilmour was suffering from health problems as well as pressures at work.
In his report, panel decision-maker Alan Meyrick said mitigating circumstances included the death of a long-serving colleague, staff shortages and “lack of support provided by his employers” at Isambard Brunel Junior School in Portsmouth.
He also said there were “disappointing results and that despite [Mr Gilmour] meeting the targets set, he remained subject to his employer's capability process”.
Teacher found with Class A drugs
He said the teacher had shown “remorse and insight” since being convicted at East Hampshire Magistrates' Court in February last year.
The report said Mr Gilmour had breached professional standards, noting: “I am particularly mindful of the finding of a relevant conviction in this case connected to Class A drugs and the impact that such a finding has on the reputation of the profession."
It added: "The panel noted that the behaviour involved in committing the offence could have had an impact on the safety of members of the public.
"In relation to the conduct of driving a car whilst the level of alcohol in his breath was nearly twice the legal limit, and being in possession of a Class A drug, namely cocaine, Mr Gilmour has been convicted of two criminal offences.
"The panel is mindful of the influence that teachers may have on pupils, parents and others in the community. In this context, the panel considers that the fact of these convictions and the behaviour which underlies these offences are such that they are likely to have an adverse effect on public confidence in the teaching profession."
Mr Gilmour is prohibited from teaching indefinitely and cannot teach in any school, sixth-form college, relevant youth accommodation or children’s home in England.
He may apply for the ban to be lifted in two years.
A spokesperson for Isambard Brunel Junior School said: "There were long-term replacements in place for three staff absences at the time [of the offences], and additional leadership support was being provided. The school remains fully staffed and has a new headteacher who is making significant improvements.
"We pride ourselves on being an employer that supports every member of our community – staff, parents and of course children and young people. We have fostered a strong sense of togetherness, promote our pastoral support, and are fully aware of the duty of care we have.”