A BNP member and teacher who wrote racially offensive comments on the Internet – using a school laptop – will not be facing disciplinary action from the General Teaching Council (GTC)
The hearing heard that Adam Walker, a technology teacher from Spennymoor, County Durham, described immigrants as “savage animals” and “filth “describing Britain as a “dumping ground” for the Third World.
Mr Walker resigned from his post after I.T. technicians were asked to investigate the usage of the laptop that the BNP member had been using.
The GTC officer opening the case against Walker yesterday noted in his statement that:
“This case is not about the BNP or whether teachers should be members of that lawful party. This case is about the actions and behaviour of a registered teacher, using a school property on school premises in school time”
However this case was clearly about more than the misuse of school property. While some will avoid talking about the central issue here, avoiding politically charged territory, this case clearly highlights the grey area that exists as to whether or not teachers should be allowed to teach if they are members of the BNP. The outcome and decision of the council here could have repercussions elsewhere.
The BNP were defeated at the general election in Barking and elsewhere. However, they still have elected councillors, London Assembly members and MEPs
Police officers and others in positions of responsibility simply cannot hold such fascist political views and practise their professions without their conduct being scrutinised. However, there are still no restrictions preventing BNP members teaching.
The GTC chairman Angela Stones commented on the outcome today:
“The committee accepts that immigrants to this country come from all over the world. A negative comment about immigration to the UK of itself need not be indicative of racist views or racial intolerance since the race of immigrants is extremely varied.
“For the GTC to prove its case in relation to (the allegation of racial and religious intolerance) the committee has to be satisfied that contributions made by Walker demonstrated views suggestive of racial intolerance.
“Although ‘suggestive’ may be a relatively low threshold, ‘intolerance’ is a significant word which the committee has considered very carefully.
“The committee’s view is that, to be suggestive of intolerance, the postings would need to deny or refuse to others the right to dissent.
“We do not find that the postings themselves were suggestive of intolerance.”
By Richard Sudan
Filed under: Far right |