South London teacher sacked for grabbing Year 6 pupil so hard she left a thumbprint and asking another ‘do you want me to hit you?’

A supply teacher has been sacked after she grabbed a primary school pupil by the arm and threatened them. Noreen Chambers, a 63-year-old teacher with 30 years of experience, grabbed the child so hard she left a mark on their skin, then told them “I really want to slap you” and asked “Do you want me to hit you?”

Ms Chambers was working as a supply teacher at St Francis R.C. Primary School in Peckham on March 6, 2020, when she grabbed a Year Six pupil by the arm during an afternoon lesson, leaving a red mark which was “approximately two inches long and looked like a thumb print”, a teacher misconduct hearing was told.

The teacher also threatened a second pupil at the Catholic primary in South London during the same lesson, telling them: “if I was your mother I would have slapped the back of your head.” At the end of the school day two pupils approached a teacher at the gates and showed her a red mark on the pupils arm, telling her Ms Chambers had done it.

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That teacher spoke to a colleague, who said the two pupils had also approached her with the same accusations. The following week, statements were taken from four pupils of the class who corroborated what happened. Ms Chambers, who worked for an agency called Philosophy Education, was suspended and informed there would be an investigation into the allegations against her.

When told, Ms Chambers was said to have appeared to be annoyed and angry and did not respond to the call well. A written statement was requested from Ms Chambers but she refused to respond or provide a statement.

On June 10, 2022, the Teaching Regulation Agency held a misconduct panel and found the allegations against Ms Chambers to be true, and found to have breached Teachers’ Standards. The panel found that Ms Chambers’ behaviour had breached the standard that a teacher “must set high expectations which inspire, motivate and challenge pupils establishing a safe, and stimulating environment for pupils, rooted in mutual respect.”

Following the hearing, Teaching Regulation Agency (TRA) decision maker John Knowles banned Ms Chambers from teaching with immediate effect, and gave her a minimum two year review period on her prohibition order before she can consider trying to teach again, on the basis that her lack of remorse means there is “some risk” to the future wellbeing of pupils.

In a statement on behalf of the misconduct panel, Mr Knowles said: “The lack of engagement in the TRA proceedings by Ms Chambers including her failure to demonstrate any insight or remorse for her actions was a significant factor informing the opinion that prohibition was warranted in the circumstances.”

He added: “The panel noted Ms Chambers has refused to provide any account of her actions on 6 March 2020, and refused to engage with the Agency’s enquiries, LADO investigation, and the TRA proceedings. Accordingly, the panel made a recommendation to the Secretary of State that a prohibition order should be imposed with immediate effect.”

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https://www.mylondon.news/news/south-london-news/south-london-teacher-sacked-grabbing-24290472

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