A principal has been struck off for organising a sleepover with Year 7 students at his home in rural Queensland.
The case dates back to 2016 when the Queensland Civil and Administrative Tribunal (QCAT) alleged that the rural primary school principal took four Year 7 boys home for a sleepover, bought them gifts and paid them to do chores, such as mow his lawn.
The principal escaped disciplinary action despite a tribunal finding he was unsuitable to teach and had failed to maintain professional boundaries. However, a two-member appeal tribunal later found the tribunal had made errors in law, prompting the Queensland College of Teachers (QCT) to successfully appeal the decision on three grounds
However, in a written judgment published on Wednesday, QCAT ruled that the principal was “not an appropriate role model for students or staff” and ordered his registration to be cancelled for at least four and a half years.
The tribunal found the principal had minimised his offending and shown little insight by telling a psychologist his behaviour was “altruistic and empathic”.
“We are satisfied that the above behaviour does not meet the standard of behaviour generally expected of a teacher and raises serious boundary violations,” the judgment read.