Teacher disciplined after allowing daughter to sit exams alone
A disgraced former headteacher of a well-respected Midland school has been handed a three-year preventative order after allowing his daughter to sit exams alone.
Nigel Griffiths, formerly of Rosewood Special School in Dudley, admitted the charge and three others at a General Teaching Council conduct hearing in Birmingham.
Mr Griffiths, of Highgrove Place, Dudley, also admitted to letting his daughter sit her GCSE Maths exams in the absence of an independent invigilator.
He also allowed his daughter, who cannot be named for legal reasons, start her exams, sat in January, March and June last year outside permitted times and to opening question papers before the allotted time of the exams.
The affair tarnished the reputation of Rosewood School, which caters for about 40 students with learning and behavioural needs, became the first school in Dudley and one of the first in the region to receive specialist status for behaviour last year.
David Kirk, Rosewood School’s head teacher, did not wish to comment on the hearing.
The hearing committee took just over one hour to conclude Griffiths’ actions had represented a substantial breach of the GTC’s professional code of conduct and handed down a three-year Conditional Regulation Order.
Committee chairman Angela Stones said: “We are satisfied that this is a case of unacceptable professional conduct.
“You knowingly failed to comply with the regulations imposed by the OCR board for statutory examinations.
“You abused your position of trust with regard to the examination board.
“We are satisfied that you failed to maintain appropriate standards of honesty and integrity and compromised the professional integrity of other staff members involved in the administration of external exams.
“The school’s reputation was damaged by your conduct. We do not accept as you indicated in your evidence that the lack of any personal gain or gain to the school in this case renders your conduct less unacceptable.
“Your judgement was so flawed that in the public interest and to maintain confidence in the profession we are obliged to make a Disciplinary Order.
“We have considered whether a reprimand would be appropriate disposal in this case but the consequences of your conduct were so serious that a reprimand would be an inadequate sanction.”
Mr Griffiths was unavailable for comment following the hearing.
The order means for the next three years Griffiths is barred from any involvement in exams and assessment including the positions of head of centre and invigilator, and is no longer allowed access to question papers or to mark coursework.
Griffiths is also required to notify his current and future employers of the terms of the order and provide evidence to the GTC Registrar that he has complied with the conditions.
Staff at Jigsaw School in Surrey, where Griffiths currently works, were not available to comment.