Foul-mouthed teacher, 61, is struck off after swearing in class and joked that one pupil was ‘a paedophile’ because he taught children to swim
- Teacher Richard Lewis repeatedly joked that one of his pupils was a paedophile
- Pupils say he regularly swore in class and told ‘explicit or inappropriate stories’
- The 61-year-old has been struck off the teaching register for next three years
A foul-mouthed media teacher has been struck off after repeatedly swearing in class and calling one pupil a ‘paedophile’ because he was a children’s swimming coach.
Richard Lewis, 61, was investigated after one student complained about his behaviour while teaching at Coleg Sir Gar college in Llanelli, Wales.
A committee heard he made sexist remarks about women and ‘recounted stories with explicit or inappropriate content’ to pupils.
He repeatedly joked that a boy, referred to as Learner E, was a paedophile, on one occasion the boy was leaving for work when Mr Lewis asked: ‘You’re off to touch kids now are you?’
He was also said to have told students stories from his days in a rock band, recalling he ‘had been on stage with a jock strap and pig head on, shooting fireworks from his crotch.’
A disciplinary panel found four misconduct allegations against him were proven and he was struck off the teaching register for three years.
Media teacher Richard Lewis, 61, has been struck off for the next three years after a panel heard he repeatedly called one pupil a paedophile, while also making sexist comments and ‘recounting stories with explicit or inappropriate content’
One 16-year-old girl on his creative media course said she reduced to tears when Mr Lewis mocked her because her boots were rubbing and she asked if she could get a plaster.
She told the committee she asked if she could get a plaster when ‘cocky’ Mr Lewis told her: ‘This is why women won’t get the jobs they want because they turn up in ridiculous stiletto heels and end up walking barefoot. It’s also why they won’t get equal rights with wages.’
The girl – named only as Learner J – said Mr Lewis ‘didn’t have a filter’ and would swear regularly in the classroom.
She said: ‘He would say ‘f***ing hell, how have you done that now?’ I thought if someone had walked into the class they would have kicked off because he was swearing so much.’
Presenting officer Ashanti-Jade Walton said a report found: ‘On one or more occasions he made comments referring to Learner E as a paedophile.’
‘On more than one occasion he swore in the presence of learners including the terms f**, s***, and c**p.
‘He also recounted stories with explicit or inappropriate content to learners and that the behaviour alleged was inappropriate or offensive.’
The hearing was told Mr Lewis would tell stories from his time touring with 1970s rock group called Pig Iron.
One on occasion he was said to have told students he ‘had been on stage with a jock strap and pig head on, shooting fireworks from his crotch.’
He also told stories involving naked dancers, intimate piercings and a man dancing while a nurse dressed in leather held his catheter.
A disciplinary panel found four misconduct allegations against him proven and that they amounted to unacceptable professional conduct.
He was cleared of allegedly making a comment saying: ‘Look at the size of her tits. I bet she’d love a shag’ and calling one a ‘slapper’.
Mr Lewis admitted making the other comments, saying: ‘I didn’t hide from anything, I’ve said I’ve done them. I have had plenty of time to reflect and I’m very ashamed about the issues that have been raised.
‘I am deeply ashamed of the comments now especially when said in jest.’
Mr Lewis, who taught creative media at Coleg Sir Gar in Wales, said he was ‘deeply ashamed’ of his comments. A panel found his behaviour ‘fell significantly short’ of teaching standards
Chair Peter Owen said there were ‘multiple occasions’ when Mr Lewis swore in front of students and that the words were ‘particularly concerning.’
Mr Owen said the paedophile jokes were ‘entirely inappropriate and offensive’ even when ‘delivered as a joke’.
He added: ‘It is entirely inappropriate to make jokes around the term ‘paedophile’ in any context and it’s clear Learner E found it very upsetting.’
Mr Owen said: ‘Mr Lewis made derogatory and sexist comments to Learner J in the presence of other learners. His comments were inappropriate and offensive and his conduct was not becoming of a registered professional.’
Mr Lewis was handed a prohibition order striking him from the teaching register for three years when he can reapply.
Mr Owen said: ‘He has behaved in a way that is inappropriate and unacceptable for a professional person. His actions fell significantly short.’
Mr Lewis has 28 days to appeal the ruling.
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