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Last Updated: Saturday, 14 January 2006, 23:03 GMT
Fresh sex offender discovery made
William Gibson
William Gibson is a convicted sex offender
It has emerged that a convicted sex offender has been working in a Bournemouth school since September.

William Gibson, 59, who was convicted of indecently assaulting a child in 1980, has been employed as a supply teacher at Porchester School.

It comes as a Education Secretary Ruth Kelly faces increasing pressure over checks made on convicted sex offenders.

The Department for Education has launched a review. The Tories say parents are losing confidence.

It has emerged that, since his conviction, Gibson has worked at two schools in South Tyneside and one in neighbouring County Durham from 2003 to 2005.

The sex offender was able to gain employment at Porchester school despite having been removed from the three previous schools after his record was discovered.

Measures have been taken over the weekend to ensure that the teacher concerned remains away from the school indefinitely, with immediate effect
Bournemouth Borough Council

Bournemouth Borough Council issued a statement confirming that an individual, who has been working at a local school as a supply teacher full time since the beginning of term, had been named in the media.

It said the teacher was employed by a supply agency and cleared to work after undergoing security checks.

"This placement has been full-time since the beginning of this term with intermittent supply days during last term."

"Measures have been taken over the weekend to ensure that the teacher concerned remains away from the school indefinitely, with immediate effect, while we ascertain the full facts of the situation."

System 'failing'

The local MP, Conservative Tobias Ellwood, said Ms Kelly had to take responsibility for a failing system.

"She and the Education Department are responsible for the system - if the system is not working, she needs to change it.

"If you are blacklisted, you should not be teaching. If you have been, have got a criminal record to do with sexual offences, you should be nowhere near a school," he added.

The head of a teacher supply agency who refused to employ Gibson when his conviction for indecent assault came to light said she was "shocked and appalled" that he had been able to find work as a teacher.

Susan Moore, managing director of the Newcastle-based STC Consortium, said: "I am sick to the pit of stomach. I do not know who has placed him there...but obviously they have not carried out the necessary checks.

Mrs Moore, 50, who said the discovery was the "tip of the iceberg" called for supply agencies to be licensed and required to meet Quality Mark standard, which would include being audited.

List 99

"This is not just about this one person but what, to me, are definite loopholes in the law," she said.

The discovery of Gibson's record comes as the latest setback for Education Secretary Ruth Kelly following a string of revelations concerning sex offenders working in schools.

She has faced a barrage of criticism since it emerged earlier this week that her department had cleared a PE teacher to work at a Norwich school even though he had been cautioned for accessing child porn.

It later emerged that two further teachers at other schools had a history of sex offences.

Those convicted of offences against children are placed on List 99 - a blacklist of those who are barred for life from working in schools.

The Tories have said parents are losing confidence in the system in place to safeguard pupils.




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