Maltby teacher’s unacceptable behaviour

A SUPPLY teacher at Maltby Academy restrained an “unruly” pupil by taking hold of him and cupping his face in his hands has been found guilty of unacceptable professional conduct.

Monday, 10th October 2011, 2:25 pm

Dr Michael Smith was found to have acted in an “unprofessional and inappropriately physical manner” with a pupil by the General Teaching Council’s professional conduct committee.

The committee imposed a conditional registration order which means he must complete a course in classroom management before he is allowed to re-register as a teacher and continue teaching.

In their findings, the committee said Dr Smith admitted that he cradled Pupil A’s face in his hands during the incident on 24th June last year.

He also admitted preventing the pupil leaving the room and taking hold of his clothes, during which he may have taken hold of his arm.

Chairman of the committee Philip Cole said: “Whatever the gravity of the incident in which Pupil A was engaged before his intervention there was no justification for Dr Smith behaving in the way he did.”

“He should not have touched Pupil A in the circumstances. He should have allowed him to leave the room. He should have exercised self-control.”

“Dr Smith in fact acknowledges that his practice did not reflect modern methods of discipline. The committee finds that these actions were unprofessional and inappropriate.”

Following the incident Dr Smith, who had not taught for 20 years, was dismissed by his employers Randstad Education.

Mr Cole added: “Dr Smith failed to put the wellbeing, development and progress of a pupil first.”

“He did not take all reasonable steps to ensure the safety and wellbeing of that pupil under his supervision.”

“By behaving as he did, he brought the reputation of the profession into disrepute. He was not prepared to follow guidelines.”

He shows some understanding into his behaviour, but he has not apologised for it. He merely ‘regrets that his attempts to encourage this child to study without inconveniencing and endangering others gave rise to problems’.”

The committee decided to impose a conditional registration order because it considers that Dr Smith’s skills in classroom management are out of date.

“Further he needs to recognise that he has an obligation to comply with modern methods and standards of classroom management. The conditions of Dr Smith’s registration are as follows,” added Mr Cole.

Dr Smith has a right of appeal to the Queen’s Bench Division of the High Court within 28 days.