Test charges deferred

A primary teacher accused of helping pupils in a key stage 2 maths test has had a hearing to determine his future in teaching postponed.

Ian Byng, who taught at Menston primary in Ilkley, West Yorkshire, is facing charges of unacceptable professional conduct.

He is accused of providing inappropriate guidance and assistance to several Year 6 pupils during the test in May 2004.

It is alleged he failed to administer the paper in accordance with guidelines, in particular making inappropriate use of it before and during the tests. Mr Byng is also said to have failed to adhere to strict timings and failed to give relevant instructions to pupils.

At an earlier GTC hearing Sheleen McCormick, presenting officer, said she believed Mr Byng, the school's KS2 manager, deliberately breached invigilation rules.

Louise Ford, one of four assistants who acted as readers in the test, told that hearing Mr Byng had "wandered among the pupils during the examination, making comments to some of them".

She said he had spoken to pupils saying: "That's right, well done", "No, there is more than that", and "We did that in class".

Mrs Ford also claimed that she heard Mr Byng say "No, it's a division not a take away" to another pupil.

After the test she and the other teaching assistants told senior school staff about his behaviour. The exam for Year 6 pupils was declared void in June 2004.

The reconvened disciplinary hearing in Birmingham last week decided it could not hear any further evidence and to hand the case over to a new committee on legal advice.

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