He made a 'fit list' of his colleagues but he's OK to teach, rules GTC

16th December 2011 at 00:00
Teacher escapes sanctions for 'unacceptable' behaviour

A head of geography who compiled a "fit list" of colleagues with his pupils and repeatedly swore in class can return to his job without facing any sanctions, the General Teaching Council for England (GTC) has ruled.

Nathan Woodville drew up the list of fellow teachers and rated their attractiveness with a group of Year 7 children, the GTC said this week.

One teacher complained about the incident after a pupil told her, "Don't worry miss, you're on the list. I voted for you - you're pretty." Another teacher said she had heard Mr Woodville say that a colleague was put on the list because she had "a really good body".

The teacher - who was made head of department at Francis Combe School in Watford, Hertfordshire, in his first year as a fully qualified teacher - was also found to have repeatedly sworn in front of pupils. Mr Woodville denied using words including "fuck" and "shit", but admitted he had used other inappropriate language.

In another incident, he made comments to a male member of staff about his sexuality at a staff party, which included Mr Woodville simulating anal sex with him, the GTC said.

Mr Woodville also lied to his deputy headteacher about the educational content of a video that his pupils were watching and made an inappropriate comment to a pupil about the colour of her hair by saying, "sit down and stop being ginger", the GTC said. All of the incidents happened between September 2007 and November 2008.

"His conduct was entirely inappropriate and unprofessional," the GTC ruled. "By behaving as he did, he not only brought the profession into disrepute but also failed to afford proper respect to his pupils and colleagues. Accordingly, the committee is satisfied that the facts found proved constitute unacceptable professional conduct."

However, the GTC had sympathy with Mr Woodville, finding that he had been put in a stressful position by being made a subject leader in his first year as a fully qualified teacher. It accepted Mr Woodville's evidence that he was not given the support he needed.

The GTC said that Mr Woodville had shown insight into his failures and had learnt from his mistakes. In the three years since leaving Francis Combe, he has re-established his reputation at Lea Valley High School, which has made him an assistant director of a year group and where pupils have nominated him for a Pearson teaching award.

"That being so, the committee has concluded that this is a case which does not require it to impose a sanction," the GTC said. "The finding of unacceptable professional conduct alone is sufficient to set and maintain proper standards of conduct."

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