A teacher has been sacked after calling a pupil a ‘paedophile’ in front of his class because he worked after school as a swimming coach.
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The boy at Coleg Sir Gar in Llanelli, West Wales, was leaving class for his after-school job as a children’s swimming teacher when he said media teacher Richard Lewis said to him:
You’re off to touch kids now, are you?
A subsequent investigation found that Mr Lewis, 61, had referred to the boy as a ‘paedophile’ on more than one occasion and also swore repeatedly in front of his classes and made sexist remarks about women.
Another student – a 16-year-old girl – claimed she was left in tears after Mr Lewis mocked her when she asked for a plaster because of blisters from her boots. In front of the class, he had said to her:
F-cking hell, what have you done now?
This is why women won’t get the jobs they want because they turn up in ridiculous stiletto shoes and end up walking barefoot. It’s also why they won’t get equal rights with wages.
When another pupil handed in work to the media teacher, he claimed the teacher replied:
F-cking hell, what is that?
Funnily enough, Mr Lewis used to be something of a rock star in his younger days, and is said to have told stories to students about his time touring with 1970s rock group ‘Pig Iron’, involving being ‘on stage with a jock strap and pig head on, shooting fireworks from his crotch’.
The disciplinary panel also heard that he told stories involving naked dancers and a man dancing while a nurse in leather held his catheter.
Mr Lewis was however cleared of calling one female student a ‘slapper’, and also of saying the following:
Look at the size of her tits. I bet she’d love a shag.
The teacher did admit to making the other remarks, saying:
I didn’t hide from anything, I’ve said I’ve done them. I have had plenty of time to reflect and I’m very ashamed about the issues that have been raised. I am deeply ashamed of the comments now especially when said in jest.
In the end, Mr Lewis was handed a prohibition order striking him from the teaching register for three years, after which he can reapply. It would be good to know how long he has been teaching if it’s taken until the age of 61 for him to get into trouble for those sort of comments – maybe he only started making them recently? Or maybe he’s just from that era of teachers when behaving like this in front of schoolchildren was normal.
Would also be interesting to see how his students have been doing academically over the years, because aside from the sexism and calling his students paedos and slappers, he actually sounds like a barrel of laughs with some cool stories from his rocker days. Either way, might be an idea to check his hard drive just in case there was a bit of projection going on there with those paedo comments.