A teacher at Penarth’s special school Ysgol-y-Deri has claimed he was the “victim of a vendetta by the head and governors” in respect of matters which arose at the end of 2012.
It’s alleged that the teacher – Ben Williams – left three of his pupils ( two with Down’s Syndrome and one with “Autism Spectrum Disorder and behavioural difficulties” ) without supervision in three separate incidents in December 2014 . Mr Williams denies “unacceptable professional behaviour ”
The case is being heard by the Education Workforce Council’s “fitness to practice committee” at the Village Hotel in Cardiff. Mr Williams had been suspended from the school after a third incident at the school – shortly after its opening – and he was dismissed about a year later.
The specific charges are that Mr Williams :-
- allowed Pupil A to leave the classroom unsupervised.
- allowed Pupil B to leave the classroom unsupervised on one or more occasions.
- left Pupil C alone and unsupervised in a “break-out” room.
Mr Williams’s representative Matthew Richards has told the hearing that his client had been “singled out for unfair treatment compared to others, that this is personal on the part of the head and that events leading up to the previous disciplinary are relevant as to why the school took the action that it did.”
A former deputy head teacher at the school, Gail George, said she believed Mr Williams had been “set up to fail” by the headmaster.
Cadi Dewi, representing Vale of Glamorgan Council, has told the panel: “By his actions or lack of actions on these occasions, he allowed these children to leave the classroom unattended. As class teacher, he had responsibility for these pupils and we say he failed in that.”
The proceedings are due to continue today and tomorrow Friday January 20th 2017.