Primary school teacher banned after offering sexual services with raunchy pics

A primary school teacher has been banned from the classroom after he offered sexual services online.

Thomas Heayel left his colleagues gobsmacked at St Columb Minor Academy in St Columb Minor near Newquay, Cornwall, after he posted raunchy pictures of himself.

A Teaching Regulation Agency disciplinary hearing found that he was guilty of the inappropriate content he posted online between February and July 2020.

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The 31-year-old was also guilty of having uploaded or to have permitted one or more images, messages and/or comments online, which offered to trade sexual services.

Mr Heayel confessed to the accusations and agreed that his behaviour was unacceptable and not professional conduct.

He started employment on September 1, 2019, and concerns were first raised by members of the local authority on July 7, 2021.

The teacher was dismissed on July 23, with the recent hearing concluding that his actions did not meet the necessary teaching standards.

However, the disciplinary panel highlighted that his behaviour fell "towards the lower end of sexual misconduct."

The panel said: "Whilst the panel had regard to the fact that there was no evidence presented that any pupils had seen or accessed the images online, the panel did consider that as a teacher Mr Heayel was likely to be viewed as a role model by pupils.

"The panel noted that whilst the website where Mr Heayel posted the images was restricted, the images could also be accessed via a generic internet search and one image contained Mr Heayel's name.

"Consequently the images were in the public domain enabling any member of the public, or pupil, to have sight of them.

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"The panel therefore concluded Mr Heayel's behaviour would undoubtedly damage the public's perception of the teaching profession and there were public interest factors to consider."

The hearing also cited that the public confidence in teaching could be "seriously weakened if conduct, such as that found against Mr Heayel, were not treated with the utmost seriousness when regulating the conduct of the profession."

The panel was aware of Mr Heayel's remorse, however, he was prohibited from teaching indefinitely.

The 31-year-old can't apply for the prohibition order to be set aside until July 5, 2024.

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