11 Dec 2014

Benefit thief keeps her primary teaching job

Only in Wales...?

A Llanelli teacher who helped her son fiddle £11,000 in benefits by pretending he was job hunting in Britain — while he was on an exotic 18-month tour of the Far East — will be allowed to continue teaching. (h/t Dave)

Sybil Lloyd filled in a benefits form — and sent them abroad for son Tom Clancey, aged 36, to sign on his extended holiday around the hotspots of Thailand, Vietnam and Cambodia.

She was convicted in Swansea Magistrates' Court in 2009, but the case was only heard by the General Teaching Council for Wales in Cardiff this week.

At the disciplinary hearing, the panel was told Ms Lloyd, who taught in a Gorseinon Primary School at the time, transferred the benefits cash abroad so her son could carry on holidaying at British taxpayers' expenses.

Clancey was paid £11,268 in housing benefit, council tax, disability allowance and income support during his 18-month Far East trip which took in taking tropical beaches and exotic rainforests.

He even got married while he was abroad.

Mother-of-three Lloyd, who at the time lived in Pentre Nicklaus Village in Llanelli, was convicted of three offences after pleading guilty to allowing or causing her son to fail to give prompt notification of a chance in circumstances and told to pay £840 in fines and court costs.

She received an official reprimand from the General Teaching Council for Wales on Monday but was not struck off after admitting her three convictions had an impact on her fitness to teach.

Presenting officer Huw Roberts said: "Teachers are role models to pupils and the public needs to have confidence in the teaching profession."

Ms Lloyd has repaid all the money in full.

She did not attend the hearing but in a written statement, Lloyd said: "I lost my good name and suffered extreme humiliation. I do my best for the children I teach."

The hearing in Cardiff was told she repaid "every penny that was over- claimed".

Lloyd had been teaching for 23 years. Hearing chair woman Sheila Drayton said: "Teachers are expected to adhere to the law. Ms Lloyd did not adhere to lawful standards of behaviour and did not conduct herself in a manner so as to uphold public trust and confidence in the teaching profession.

"She has expressed genuine regret and remorse and repaid the money in full.

"The offences took place outside school and there is no evidence that her behaviour has adversely affected pupils."

So it's fine for a burglar to teach your children, as long as it wasn't the school premises they burgled.

Clancey, of Loughor, Swansea, admitted failing to inform the authorities of a change in circumstance while he was out of the country. He was given a 12-month community order after he returned to Britain.


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