Criminals apply for teacher jobs

CRIMINALS found guilty of wounding, rioting, arson and passport forgery all applied to become teachers in Suffolk in the last three years, it has been revealed.

Josh Warwick

CRIMINALS found guilty of wounding, rioting, arson and passport forgery all applied to become teachers in Suffolk in the last three years, it has been revealed.

The startling list of convictions was uncovered following a Freedom of Information request to the Criminal Records Bureau (CRB), the Home Office agency tasked with providing information on those who apply for jobs working with children or vulnerable adults.

The list relating to 2008 revealed that out of the 2,097 applications for the position of teacher in Suffolk, 26 people had criminal convictions listed on the Police National Computer.


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In 2007, 1,898 disclosure applications were submitted, 19 of which revealed convictions, while in 2006, 1,820 applications were received, 17 of which uncovered a criminal history.

However, the actual volume of convictions is much higher, because many applicants were found to have more than one offence on their record.

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Over the three years, the total number of crimes committed runs to 150.

A spokesman for the CRB said: “While 26 Disclosure Certificates were issued for 2008 with conviction data held, the number of actual convictions disclosed is much higher as some individuals may have had multiple convictions. The same can be applied to the statistics for 2006 and 2007.

“The CRB is unable to confirm if any of the individuals were employed as a result of the information being released as the CRB has no involvement in any recruitment decision made. The decision is made solely by the potential employer.”

In 2008, offences included assault with intention to rob, obtaining property by deception, assisting unlawful immigration and wounding.

Figures revealed 21 convictions for theft, 13 for drink-driving and 12 for criminal damage.

In 2007, offences included arson endangering life and possession of Class A drug LSD, while in 2006, rioting, assault on a police officer and possession of an offensive weapon in a public place were uncovered by the CRB check.

Nationally, of the 248,220 disclosure applications from teachers, 6,750 had criminal convictions.

A spokesman for Suffolk County Council said: “When the CRB check reveals a conviction, it is treated as a very serious matter because of the consideration that this person could be working with children.

“We immediately contact the school and we work together on each individual case to agree what should be done.

“The outcome will depend on the nature of the conviction, what sort of offence it is and how long ago it took place.”

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