Derby

'Touchy-feely' Chesterfield teacher banned from schools

Parkside Community School Image copyright Google
Image caption Michael Hall worked at Parkside Community School in Chesterfield from January 2006 to January 2014

A man has been banned from teaching after he sexually harassed colleagues, made inappropriate comments to pupils and had sex on school premises.

Michael Hall, 51, told pupils at Parkside Community School, Chesterfield they had "nice legs" and made sexual innuendos at women he worked with.

He also had sex with a teaching assistant during school time in a store room.

Hall has been banned from teaching at any school in England.

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He resigned from the Derbyshire school in July 2014, during an investigation.

Stolen cash

Hall also failed to tell Parkside Community School he had been jailed for theft when he was a police officer.

A prohibition order has now been made banning him indefinitely from teaching at any school, sixth form college, youth accommodation or children's home in England.

Mr Hall, was jailed at Nottingham Crown Court in 1997 for two offences of theft, which were committed in 1996.

He stole cash from a police station and also took £180 from a suicide victim - altering the note to indicate they had left £20 instead of £200.

Hall qualified as a teacher after his release from prison and started working at the school in January 2006 as the head of design and technology.

However, the school only found out about his convictions after he had been appointed.

He then admitted taking cash from the police station, but did not mention taking the suicide victim's money.

'Touchy feely'

During his employment at the school he sexually harassed five of his female colleagues, most of whom were teaching assistants.

He made inappropriate comments to numerous pupils and touched some of them inappropriately, such as putting his hands on their shoulders and playing with their hair.

He was suspended in January 2014 while the school investigated internally, then eventually resigned in July 2014.

A professional conduct panel of the National College for Teaching and Leadership found him guilty of unacceptable professional conduct.

The panel's findings

Image caption The panel found him guilty of unacceptable professional conduct

Sexual relationship at school

Michael Hall had sex and oral sex with a teaching assistant during school time at various locations within the school, including a store room adjacent to his classroom and a school cellar.

He denied having a sexual relationship with the woman but the panel accepted her account, judging her to be a "careful and truthful witness".

Sexual harassment of five women

The panel said his sexual harassment was "targeted at junior colleagues, some of whom can be properly described as vulnerable".

The comments started with "gentle flirtation" but over time became "more direct and salacious involving overt sexual content or unmistakable innuendo".

They included "I'm admiring your underwear, what have you got on?".

Some of the colleagues described unwelcome physical contact, such as touching their bottom, or him placing their hand on his penis, over his trousers.

Inappropriate behaviour with pupils

He referred to some pupils as "chicken legs" and made references to KFC when he talked about others' legs.

One girl said: "I used to wear a skirt in year 8 but I stopped wearing it because Mr Hall commented that he had seen better legs in KFC."

He told other girls they had "nice legs" or they "looked nice in a skirt", and made comments about the size of girls' bottoms.

He told some to pull their skirts up because they were too low, and others to pull their tops down because they were "not showing enough cleavage".

He touched some pupils inappropriately, such as putting his hands on their shoulders and playing with their hair.

One girl said in her interview: "Mr Hall is a bit touchy-feely. He goes behind girls only and rubs their shoulder."

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