Struck-off teacher allowed back in class

15th June 2007 at 01:00
A RELIGIOUS studies teacher, banned from teaching for sexually harassing four female colleagues, is to be allowed back in classrooms.

It is the first time the General Teaching Council has restored a prohibited teacher to the register. And - due to the council's policy of deleting any public record of suspension after three months - Barry Derriscott's two-year prohibition will not be disclosed if he applies for jobs, despite warnings that he is a risk to staff and pupils.

However, following TES enquiries, the GTC said it would look at its policy again.

Martin Jones, the headteacher at Pensby boys' high school on the Wirral, told the original hearing that he would have considerable reservations about letting Mr Derriscott back into a classroom.

In an interview with The TES this week, Mr Derriscott said he felt vindicated and was likely to seek work as a supply teacher.

Headteachers' associations ex-pressed dismay that a banned teacher could be reinstated with no mention of their prohibition on record.

The Government tightened up checks on school employees following Sir Michael Bichard's inquiry into the Soham murders, but Mr Derriscott's prohibition would not show up on a Criminal Records Bureau check because it was not a police matter.

He was struck from the register in February 2005 after stalking one colleague and trying to put his hand up the skirt of another.

He had expressed remorse to the GTC, but denied sexually harassing the four women, describing them as a "coven" who had conspired against him.

Free to return, page 3

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