Yorkshire woman banned from classrooms after lying about her qualifications

A woman from Yorkshire has been banned from teaching indefinitely after lying on a job application form.

Ms Shivarna Mitra applied for a job at Southmere Primary Academy in Bradford and provided false information about her previous roles at schools and a qualification.

She claimed to have worked at a school, but had in fact worked at an after school club, and did not hold any of the role she claimed to in her application form.

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Ms Mitra, 39, also filled in "misleading" information about a previous conviction she had for fraud.

Southmere Primary Academy in Bradford

During her interview with the school in November 2017, she failed to correct any of the inaccurate information she had presented to them in her application, a report by the Teaching Regulation Agency said.

She also submitted a certificate claiming to be awarding her QTLS (Qualified Teacher and Learning Skills) status from the Society for Education and Training, which turned out to be a forgery.

In her job application form, Ms Mitra claimed to have been head of key stage two at two other primary schools, and also failed to mention her conviction.

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In 2009, Ms Mitra was convicted of two counts of fraud by false representation after accepting more than £2,500 from her employer at the time. She was given a 12 month community order, with 100 hours of unpaid work, and ordered to pay back the money.

The TRA report found her actions had brought the profession of teaching into disrepute and banned her from the classroom indefinitely.

It said: "The panel was satisfied that the conduct of Ms Mitra fell significantly short of the standards expected of the profession.

"On the application form she included a significant amount of vital information, such as her current and previous employers and roles and the details of a referee, which were false. Moreover, Ms Mitra provided a misleading description of the circumstances and facts of the offences for which she was convicted.

"The panel considered that this conduct fell seriously short of what was required in the circumstances and was a failure to act with honesty or integrity and, therefore, was a failure to maintain the high standards of ethics and behaviour required of teachers. Accordingly, the panel was satisfied that Ms Mitra was guilty of unacceptable professional conduct."

It said her behaviour was "highly likely to bring the profession into disrepute".

Decision maker for the TRA Sarah Buxcey said: "I have considered whether not allowing a review period reflects the seriousness of the findings and is a proportionate period to achieve the aim of maintaining public confidence in the profession.

"In this case, factors mean that a two-year review period is not sufficient to achieve the aim of maintaining public confidence in the profession. These elements are the fraud and dishonesty found and the lack of either insight or remorse.

"I consider therefore that allowing for no review period is necessary to maintain public confidence and is proportionate and in the public interest.

"This means that Ms Shivarna Mitra is prohibited from teaching indefinitely and cannot teach in any school, sixth form college, relevant youth accommodation or children’s home in England."