THE former headteacher of a Haverfordwest secondary school has been struck from the register of education practitioners for “unacceptable professional conduct”.

A Fitness to Practise Committee of the Education Workforce Council found allegations against Dr Nicholas Poole proven at a hearing last week.

The hearing was held in Cardiff on October 2 and 3.

Dr Poole, who was made headteacher at the secondary school in 2013 and resigned in May 2016, was accused of “acting dishonestly” by authorising his pay progression and, on a number of occasions, recording he was at meetings when he was not.

The Fitness to Practise Committee found the following allegations proven, that whilst employed as headteacher at Sir Thomas Picton School Dr Poole:

1. On or around 21 October 2015, authorised his pay progression without:

(a) Performance Management Panel review meeting taking place to agree that he had either met and/or made significant progress towards his targets.

(b) having received prior approval from the Pay Review Committee.

2. On or around 21 October 2015, recommended to the Pay Review Committee that members of the Senior Leadership Team received pay progression when he had not completed their Performance Management review.

3. On or around 21 October 2015, reversed the decision made by the Pay Review Committee not to award members of staff pay increments without referring this back to the Committee for approval.

4. As a result of his actions, breached:

(a) the Statutory School Teacher Appraisal (Wales) Regulations 2011 (in relation to 1(a) and 2);

(b) the School’s Performance Management Procedure (in relation to 1(a), 1(b) and 2);

(c) the School’s Pay Policy (in relation to 1(a), 1(b), 2 and 3).

5. By acting in the manner as alleged in paragraphs 1(a), 1(b) and 2, acted dishonestly.

The Fitness to Practise Committee imposed a Prohibition Order, indefinitely removing Dr Poole from the Register of Education Practitioners. It also decided Dr Poole may not make an application for restoration to the Register of Education Practitioners for at least six years.

If Dr Poole not make a successful application for readmission after 3 October 2023, he will remain prohibited indefinitely.

Dr Poole has the right of appeal to the High Court within 28 days.