Cwmcarn teacher who lied over relative's cancer banned from profession
A TEACHER who lied about a relative having cancer to get time off work has been banned from the profession.
Kelly Baker, 31, was given a six-month jail sentence suspended for two years after admitting two counts of fraud at Cardiff Crown Court in July 2012.
The Cwmcarn Primary School worker falsely told her employers her relative fell into a coma and had one of his legs amputated.
Following her conviction she was called to attend a General Teaching Council for Wales hearing to assess her suitability to continue teaching.
The panel took into consideration her convictions and also found her guilty of unacceptable professional conduct after she dishonestly claimed her father had died in July 2011 so she could get paid leave.
Baker did not attend the hearing but was given a prohibition order banning her from teaching in her absence. She cannot reapply for registration until 2017, and there is no guarantee she will be reinstated.
The panel concluded: “We have heard evidence that Miss Baker’s persistent and dishonest behaviour did adversely affect the emotional well-being of her pupils.
“She abused the trust of the school authority and her colleagues and her conduct did have serious financial implications for the school.”
During her court case prosecutor Steve Harmes told how Baker started taking time off in January 2010 and handed in false hospital certificates for injuries including a broken arm, fractured ribs and a broken hip.
In November 2011 she claimed a family member was receiving cancer treatment, telling them he was in a coma before later claiming he had regained consciousness in December 2011.
She was only caught out when the school’s head teacher went to the Prince of Wales Hospital in Bridgend to take a card to Baker and was told she was not there.
She claimed the relative had been moved to a hospital in Cardiff but further checks by the head teacher found this was not the case.
He then visited the address she listed on her job application, the home of a former partner, who confirmed the relative in question was perfectly fit and well and had never been in hospital.
Baker, of Maesycwmmer, admitted two counts of fraud – one of providing a false reference in her mother’s name on her job application and another of lying about her relative’s health to get paid leave.