Banned teacher tried to get job at Saltus

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  • Matthew McGowan was struck off the teaching register in the UK

    Matthew McGowan was struck off the teaching register in the UK

A man banned from teaching in Britain because of serious misconduct with a 16-year-old schoolgirl applied for a job at Saltus Grammar School this year.

Matthew McGowan approached Saltus after complaints were raised about his relationship with a pupil at Wycombe Abbey School.

But McGowan, 38, a former Warwick Academy teacher, withdrew his application before a panel in the UK ruled on his case.

McGowan instead applied for a job with the Bermuda Police Service and joined a recruitment class last month.

He was removed from his duties after the results of a disciplinary hearing in the UK were revealed.

McGowan was struck off the UK teachers’ register for life after the National College for Teaching and Leadership found he had developed an inappropriate relationship with the girl, a pupil at the fee-paying girls’ boarding school, where he taught drama.

A complaint about McGowan was made by the girl’s mother in July 2016, and he resigned from the school in September 2016.

Deryn Lavell, head of school at Saltus, confirmed that Mr McGowan had applied for a position at the school after leaving Wycombe Abbey.

She told The Royal Gazette: “He applied for a post at Saltus this spring and we had no knowledge then of any investigation.

“We went through our normal interview process, which always includes a rigorous reference check, but he withdrew his application before that process could be completed.”

Mr McGowan taught drama at Warwick Academy for three years before leaving the island in 2010.

He took a job at Wycombe Abbey school in Buckinghamshire in 2011.

The Bermuda Police Service last week confirmed that Mr McGowan joined its recruit foundation course last month.

A spokesman said that information on the disciplinary hearing was not available at the time and that McGowan had failed to mention it.

Acting Deputy Commissioner Antione Daniels said on Friday that Mr McGowan had been removed from active duty.

Mr Daniels added that the public would be updated on Mr McGowan’s employment status once legal advice had been taken.

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