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Sex-site deputy under scrutiny

A deputy head who used his school computer to log on to fetish websites has been found guilty of unacceptable professional conduct by the General Teaching Council for England.

Peter Richardson, formerly of Fulbridge partnership of schools in Peterborough, Cambridgeshire, was given a three-year conditional registration order.

His use of computers will be monitored and recorded weekly for three years, with the findings reported to the GTC.

Mr Richardson will not be able to hold a management post for that period and has to inform future employers about the order.

He is also limited to using only one computer and is not allowed to be alone on school premises.

The GTC committee heard that Mr Richardson was suspended during an internal investigation in February 2003 and resigned shortly after.

Assistant head Charlotte Krzanicki who discovered some of the websites he had been accessing, said in a written statement: "I saw disturbing images of masturbation, oral sex and other extremely explicit sites."

Mr Richardson, who is married with a young son, said the pressure of being deputy head of more than 800 pupils started to affect his health.

He said: "Foolishly I turned to the internet to escape. I never intended to hurt any of the children in my care."

Mr Richardson is now working at Southfields primary school in Rutland. His headteacher St John Burkett said that he was aware of the circumstances when he decided to appoint Mr Richardson to the management team.

Eileen Baker, GTC committee chairman, said: "As a senior teacher his responsibility should have been to securely implement school policies, but he acted with a consistent disregard."

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