A police officer turned headteacher has been banned from the classroom indefinitely after dishonestly using school payment cards for his own gain. 

Ian Carroll was head of three County Durham schools when he used cards to book hotels and train tickets for his family, as well as to buy fuel, a Costco membership and Apple pen, a professional misconduct panel was told. 

Banning Mr Carroll from teaching in England indefinitely, the panel found Mr Carroll had "expressed no remorse".The Northern Echo: Ian Carroll pictured in 2016Ian Carroll pictured in 2016 (Image: Northern Echo)

Mr Carroll was employed as an executive headteacher at Forest-of-Teesdale School, near Barnard Castle and the now-closed Rookhope School from January 2011. He was also the executive headteacher of St John’s Chapel Primary School from September 2016. 

The alarm was raised by members of staff after they noticed purchases on payment logs that would not benefit pupils.

The panel found Mr Carroll guilty of several allegations relating to his dishonest use of procurement cards, of the Rookhope and Forest of Teesdale schools, to dishonestly make personal purchases.

The panel was told, staff raised concerns over his conduct after noticing purchases on payment logs that would not benefit pupils.

Among the allegations the panel found proved was the purchase, for his own gain, of about £50 worth of fuel using the Forest-ofTeesdale School procurement card.

The Northern Echo: Ian Carroll pictured in 2016Ian Carroll pictured in 2016 (Image: Northern echo)

And in March 2018 he purchased three train tickets from Birmingham to Newcastle on the Rookhope procurement card at a cost of £125.20.

In July 2018 Mr Carroll bought a “Costco” membership for £33.60 on the Forest-of-Teesdale card.

There was no logical reason why Costco membership would have been required, the panel was told.

Costco was at least an hour’s drive from the school, but near to Mr Carroll’s own address.

Mr Carroll, who was absent from proceedings, had denied the allegations and said the continuance of misconduct proceedings had been "extremely damaging" to him.

It it's findings, the panel said:  "The panel has found Mr Carroll’s actions to have been deliberate given that, in respect of some of the conduct found proven, it determined that Mr Carroll acted dishonestly. 

"Mr Carroll has not expressed any remorse. The panel also did not consider that he had demonstrated insight.

"Instead, his remarks indicated his chagrin at the personal consequences of regulatory action given his comment regarding the impact these proceedings have had on him.

"He has expressed no remorse for the upset he caused to those who he worked with and who were impacted by his actions."

The panel added: "His representations stated that 'had any financial errors been made, I would have been quite willing to have made a personal repayment in school, if the matter had been drawn to my attention'.

"The matters were drawn to his attention, and yet he delayed making repayments and in some cases did not make the required repayment at all."

The panel made a recommendation to the Secretary of State that a prohibition order should be imposed with immediate effect.


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Mr Carroll is now prohibited from teaching in any school, sixth form college, relevant youth accommodation or children's home in England.

Mr Carroll, who qualified as a teacher in 1987, was previously working at a 3,000-pupil academy in Northumberland.

He may apply for the prohibition order to be set aside, but not until 30 January 2029, 5 years from the date of this order at the earliest. This is not an automatic right to have the prohibition order removed.