Educating Yorkshire star banned from teaching after having sex with former pupils

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A former Thornhill Community Academy teacher and star of Educating Yorkshire has been banned from teaching after he admitted having sex with two former pupils.

Neil Giffin, former head of humanities at the school, was found to have inappropriately contacted several of his former pupils from a previous school.

The National College for Teaching and Leadership found Giffin contacted former pupils under fake names on social media, sent inappropriate messages and engaged in sexual activity with some of those pupils.

Giffin faced 16 allegations, 15 of which he admitted or the panel said were proven.

He admitted sleeping with two former pupils aged over 18 when he was teaching at a different school around 2007-2008.

The remainder of the allegations involved inappropriate communications with three former pupils between 2012 and April 2014 when he was teaching at Thornhill.

A report from the panel published today (Wednesday) said: “In mitigation, Mr Giffin stated that he used the fake Facebook accounts to provide a form of escapism from the stress and pressures of his life at the time, including various personal and financial problems.

“The panel did not consider that these factors excused his behaviour.”

Decision maker Paul Heathcote, who approved the ban, said: “Mr Giffin’s actions have been found to be sexually motivated. There is a repeated pattern of behaviour and there was clear potential for a vulnerable pupil to be harmed.

“Whilst he has shown regret, there is little evidence of insight into the impact his actions might have had on pupils.”