Stevenage teacher banned after stealing thousands in fraud case

Stevenage teacher Sam Gosnell has been banned from the classroom indefinitely

Stevenage teacher Sam Gosnell has been banned from the classroom indefinitely - Credit: Archant

A teacher convicted of fraud has been banned from the classroom indefinitely.

Samantha Gosnell, of Lincoln Road in Stevenage, pleaded guilty in June last year to two fraud-related charges after taking thousands of pounds from St Vincent de Paul Catholic Primary School’s Parent Staff Association.

The mother-of-two was arrested earlier that year after a member of staff found inconsistencies in the Stevenage school’s accounts.

Gosnell, who had worked at the school since 2001, was given a 12-week prison sentence, suspended for 12 months. She was also ordered to repay the missing money as well as £85 in court costs.

Now a professional conduct panel has imposed an indefinite teaching ban on Gosnell.

The disgraced teacher has already been sacked by the school.

The panel’s report outlines petty cash withdrawals made between August and November 2012 of about £1,300. Some of the money was used to make payments, including £100 to her son.

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The money was also used to pay for petrol and buy gifts for an IT technician and the secretary of the PSA. The gifts included wine, Jack Daniels and an iPod Touch.

The 42-year-old is reported to have repaid this money to the school.

Gosnell claimed she spent £3,381 on Amazon buying resources for the Bedwell Crescent school.

When queried by the school, she produced a fake receipt.

Imposing the teaching ban on behalf of Education Secretary Nicky Morgan, the panel said it “is satisfied Mrs Gosnell’s actions are incompatible with being a teacher.

“Her actions involved a breach of the personal and professional conduct elements of the Teachers’ Standards.

“Mrs Gosnell abused her position of trust in relation to funds intended to support pupils’ learning.

“Her actions were deliberate, dishonest and continued over a period of time.”

After seven years, Gosnell can apply to have the ban lifted, but she will have to convince another panel she is fit to return to teaching.

She has a right of appeal to the High Court.