September 2018

Cleared Surrey teacher banned over sex claims

A former teacher who was cleared of child sex assault charges two years ago has been banned from the profession.

Russell Andrew Monk, 39, who worked at independent Box Hill School, in Dorking, Surrey, was found not guilty on eight counts in two trials at Guildford Crown Court.

The Teaching Regulation Agency (TRA) has now banned Mr Monk from teaching.

The BBC could not trace Mr Monk, but Box Hill School said he was sacked for breaching safeguarding procedures.

Mr Monk, then of Biggleswade, Bedfordshire, faced trial in 2015 accused of eight charges of sexually assaulting a boy under 13.

He was found not guilty of six charges and faced a retrial on the other two in 2016. which he was also cleared of.

The TRA considered claims Mr Monk had touched pupils intimately during school trips and also when students went camping in the school grounds.

The allegations were disputed by Mr Monk, who was not present or represented at a TRA hearing.

As director of outdoor education at the school, Mr Monk was responsible for expeditions including an annual trip to the New Forest and activities such as camping, adventure nights and “Fright Night”, a report said.

The panel found four claims that Mr Monk groped pupils proven, but said one allegation could not be proven.

It said Mr Monk was prohibited from teaching indefinitely, but had 28 days to appeal.

A statement issued by Box Hill School said: “We have been made aware of Mr Monk’s disqualification from teaching.

“This follows our own internal investigation which found that he had breached our safeguarding procedures, and as a result he was dismissed.

“Mr Monk has not taught at Box Hill School since 2013 when he was immediately suspended following an allegation made about his conduct.”

The school said it had worked with the appropriate authorities at all stages.