A SCHOOL teacher who was cautioned for the possession of cocaine will return to his school after receiving a reprimand.
Ian Anthony Johnson was a teacher at Windsor First School in Newbiggin-by- the-Sea, Northumberland, when he was found in possession of cocaine, a class A drug, in June last year.
Northumbria Police cautioned him but he was later suspended and the incident was referred to the General Teaching Council (GTC), the professional regulatory body of the teaching profession.
In a hearing almost a year and a half later, the GTC decided that Johnson’s possession was unacceptable professional conduct.
But he was told that while it must not happen again, he would not be removed from the profession.
Instead he received a reprimand which will be taken into account in any future proceedings but which will expire after two years.
The GTC believed his behaviour was not compatible with the standards of professional conduct expected by the public and profession.
Its ruling said: “We believe that you have shown insight into your actions and we have seen no evidence that your conduct has had any direct effect upon pupils. We have noted your mitigation and have no evidence that you have been in trouble with the police since the date of the caution.
“We do believe, however, that your conduct has undermined the reputation of the profession.
“However, we believe that you are able to make a positive contribution to the profession in the future.”
The hearing also received a reference from Windsor First School headteacher Anne Carter and was “impressed by the positive nature of that reference”.
Johnson was given credit for co-operating with the GTC, accepting that his behaviour amounted to unacceptable professional conduct and expressing genuine regret.
The GTC also considered two previous convictions, one for perverting the course of justice and another for speeding, but said that the convictions were not relevant to his ability to teach.
Johnson is now expected to return to teach in the near future, according to a Northumberland County Council spokeswoman.
She added: “At the hearing, the headteacher, along with governors, spoke favourably of Mr Johnson. It was felt he had made a good contribution, particularly in sport, and achieved the Active Sportsmark award for the school.
“Mr Johnson has taught at Windsor First School, Newbiggin, since 2004. Decisions on disciplinary matters are the responsibility of the governing body of the school.”
Last week The Journal reported how Wearside teacher Darren Adamson, 36, would be allowed to keep teaching despite admitting viewing internet pornography on a school computer.