Doncaster headteacher admits altering pupils’ exam answers

Sunnyfields Primary School Headteacher, Julie Beech, 51, has been banned from the profession after admitting to altering pupils' answers in SATs exams last year.
Sunnyfields Primary School Headteacher, Julie Beech, 51, has been banned from the profession after admitting to altering pupils' answers in SATs exams last year.

A Doncaster headteacher, who altered answers on pupils’ SATs exams, has been banned from the profession.

Headteacher at Sunnyfield Primary School in Scawthorpe, Julie Beech, was found to have changed pupils’ answers on five mental maths tests and three spelling tests in year 6 exams in 2014.

A National College for Teaching Leadership panel heard how the alterations came to light after the Standards and Testing Agency raised concerns over the fact that certain scripts appeared to have been altered, with the alteration forming an indentation on subsequent scripts.

The concerns were investigated by Doncaster council, at which point Ms Beech, aged 51, admitted she was responsible for altering the scripts.

Ms Beech has been banned from teaching ‘indefinitely’, however she will be able to appeal against the ban in two years.

In 2013 the education regulator Ofsted had warned pupils at the school were not making good progress in maths.

The school was told it ‘required improvement’ following the inspection in May 2013, having previously been categorised as outstanding.

This comes after the school had been placed under pressure to improve, after an Ofsted report ruled ‘too few pupils’ did well at Key Stage 2.

The panel said Ms Beech had ‘demonstrated clear remorse’ and had a previously unblemished record.

However, they ruled that her conduct amounted to ‘unacceptable professional conduct’, and fell ‘significantly short’ of the standards expected.

The panel added: “The teacher’s status as head teacher would have left her in no doubt that what she was doing was dishonest and would be viewed as such.”