A Bishop Auckland teacher struck up an inappropriate relationship with a ‘vulnerable child’, a misconduct panel has said.

Andrew Boreland has been banned from teaching for life after sparking up a relationship with the child, who was under 18.

The child was not a pupil of his, nor did they attend Bishop Barrington School in Bishop Auckland, County Durham where he was a newly qualified teacher.

The 30-year-old, who was 26 when the relationship began during the Covid lockdown, did not show up for the final stage of a teacher misconduct hearing against him last month.

Boreland pursued a romantic relationship with the child and they became “physically intimated”, a report published on Friday (May 10) said.

They “kissed, cuddled and touched intimate areas”, it detailed.

The panel concluded his actions of engaging in the relationship were sexually motivated.

At one point the child was reported missing to police by concerned parents, only to be found at Boreland’s home.

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The panel heard that in an interview he said he’d initially suggested to the child they delayed getting into a relationship until they were older and that he’d said it would be inappropriate to continue the relationship due to his job.

He’d hidden the relationship from the school and his own family, which the panel said demonstrated he considered the relationship inappropriate.

But Boreland said he did not consider his relationship with Individual A to be inappropriate and therefore did not need to disclose it to the school.

Although the child was not a pupil of his, the panel said his conduct touched upon his profession, as the child’s age was similar to pupils that he was teaching or could teach in the future.

Police said no offence had been committed as the child was above the age of consent – 16.

The panel found he was guilty of unacceptable professional conduct.

“Mr Boreland’s behaviours spanned a considerable period. The conduct entailed the pursuit of a sexual relationship with a child, the deliberate concealment of that relationship from his family, and the school, and the associated failures to disclose to the school,” the misconduct panel, chaired by Martyn Stephens, said.

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“Mr Boreland had not provided any new evidence on mitigation, insight or remorse for the panel to consider at the reconvened hearing.”

He had however said at a previous hearing it was “unwise to commence the relationship” when he did.

“There was no evidence that Mr Boreland’s actions were not deliberate, and there was no evidence to suggest that Mr Boreland was acting under extreme duress”, it concluded.

He will never be able to teach in another school in England again, or apply to have his ban revoked.