Teacher may lose job for pushing local yob into bush

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A teacher plagued by anti-social behaviour around his home could lose his job after he pushed a boy into a hedge.

IT teacher Dean Macfarlane had suffered 18 months of trouble with young teenagers including damage to his home and car.

The catalogue of yobbery involved kids going into his garage and them climbing on cars and garage roofs, damaging vehicles and playing tennis with small stones against houses in the neighbourhood.

It culminated in the 55-year-old teacher being hit in the face with a snowball and he reacted by pushing a 12-year-old boy who spat on the ground in front of him into a hedge.

He ended up before magistrates in Barnsley, South Yorkshire this week where he was ordered to carry out 100 hours of unpaid community work after he admitted assault.

Mr Macfarlane, of Carlton, Barnsley is now waiting to hear from the regulatory body The National College for Teaching and Leadership on whether he can keep his job at a Doncaster school.

There has been a flood of support for Mr Macfarlane from pupils and staff at his school.

He said after the court hearing that the incident resulted from “pure frustration” last February when he momentarily lost his temper after confronting two boys who had been snowballing him.

He said: “For three days the house had been pelted with snowballs, covering all of the windows.

“On the day in question I was getting changed and heard “thud, thud, thud” and ran to the front door and saw the car had about eight snowballs splattered on it.

“I looked over the fence and saw a group of about seven lads all aged 12 or 13 who gave me a load of verbal abuse and then set off running. A couple of them threw snowballs at me and I was hit in the face and body.”

He shrugged off the attack but 15 minutes later went out and saw two of the snowballers and told them to stay away from his house.

He said: “The smaller of the two boys said “it wasn’t me, I wasn’t there” and I told him I had just seen him as he was less than five feet away from me.

“Then the other boy spat on the floor in front of me. It escalated from there and pure frustration took over and I pushed the lad and he went into a hedge.

“It was completely out of character for me. I did not go with the intention of hunting down these lads and I wasn’t aggressive but did end up pushing one of them which I am sorry about. It was the wrong course of action to take.”

He has been in the job for 34 years and formerly taught art and design in Barnsley. He recognises his job is at risk.

He said: “This error of judgement has put my job under threat. It is all hanging up in the air and I’ve now got to wait to see if I can go back to work in September.”