Manchester

Bolton teacher banned over student sex texts

A teacher from Greater Manchester has been banned from the profession after he admitted sending inappropriate texts to a "vulnerable" student.

Martin Kay, 42, was guilty of unacceptable professional conduct while working with Bolton Music Service (BMS) in 2013, a panel hearing heard.

He sent the student "flirtatious messages", photographs and videos of himself carrying out a sex act.

Kay also urged her to delete the messages after an investigation began.

'Not equals'

Bolton Council said it took all safeguarding concerns "extremely seriously" and had carried out a full disciplinary investigation when an allegation was brought.

That investigation resulted in the termination of Kay's employment in 2014.

Kay had been a teacher at BMS since 1996 and had been deputy head since 2008.

An investigation was carried out by the National College for Teaching and Leadership (NCTL) between January and September 2014.

When giving evidence to the panel, he accepted the student, who was over the age of 16, had "low self-esteem" and that they were "not equals" and he "should have known better".

The panel concluded his actions were "sexually motivated" and the student's "issues with her self-esteem made her vulnerable".

He was in a position of trust and had crossed professional boundaries, it said.

Serious misconduct

Kay continued to communicate with the student during the investigation, discussed the evidence and sent her messages of a personal nature, the panel found.

It heard he had written words to the effect: "If it's not about you, then I have nothing to worry about".

He had therefore tried to "mislead the disciplinary investigation" which amounted to "misconduct of a serious nature", it concluded.

The panel found Kay's actions "constituted conduct that may bring the profession into disrepute".

Kay has been prohibited from teaching indefinitely. He may apply for the order to be lifted in April 2020.

A Bolton Council spokesperson said: "While no criminal offences were identified by the police we concluded that Kay's actions... amounted to unprofessional conduct and his employment with the council was terminated in 2014.

"In line with our procedures we referred the matter to the NCTL and we welcome their recommendation that Kay is prohibited from teaching."

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