Sheffield & South Yorkshire

Doncaster principal Russell Hall handed exam rules ban

A school principal has been barred from teaching for at least two years after a breach of exam rules led to 21 pupils' test results being cancelled.

Russell Hall broke guidelines in May 2014 while head of St Oswald's Church of England Academy, Doncaster.

He reviewed completed test papers, failed to store them securely before marking and later lied to investigators about his actions.

A tribunal found him guilty of "unacceptable professional conduct".

The National College for Teaching and Leadership panel heard Mr Hall had gone through Key Stage Two exam papers and shared results with some staff.

However, Mr Hall told investigators the papers had been kept secure prior to marking.

'Sorry chapter'

The panel said Mr Hall's conduct had fallen "significantly short of the standards expected".

It said: "Mr Hall's dishonest actions, in failing to secure the papers and seeking to mislead the local authority's investigation on behalf of the STA, resulted in the test scores of an entire cohort of children being annulled.

"This would have caused significant stress and disappointment to the children, their parents and teachers and reflected badly on the school and the teaching profession as a whole.

In a statement submitted to the panel, Mr Hall said he was "ashamed" of his actions.

He said: "I truly regret my dishonesty regarding the SATs papers of 2014 and the distress this has caused the pupils and parents".

Mr Hall can apply for the ban to be removed from January 2018.

Mr Hall was still in position when the school was rated as "outstanding" when lasted inspected by Ofsted in June 2014.

David Elvin, the chair of governors at St Oswald's, said the events had marked a "sorry chapter in the life of an otherwise excellent school".

The Diocesan director of education, Huw Thomas, said the appointment of a new head teacher in September had allowed the school to "move on from these events".

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