Former teacher jailed for sex offences

A FORMER teacher of a Suffolk school has been jailed for two years for sexually assaulting a pupil nearly 30 years ago.Alan Stancliffe, 58, of Pontefract, west Yorkshire, was found guilty of three offences of indecent assault on a former pupil at Kesgrave Hall School, near Ipswich, between 1978 and 1980.

A FORMER teacher of a Suffolk school has been jailed for two years for sexually assaulting a pupil nearly 30 years ago.

Alan Stancliffe, 58, of Pontefract, west Yorkshire, was found guilty of three offences of indecent assault on a former pupil at Kesgrave Hall School, near Ipswich, between 1978 and 1980.

Today at Ipswich Crown Court, Judge Neil McKittrick sentenced him to two years in prison for the offences and told him he would remain registered on the sex offender's register for the next 10 years.

Stancliffe, a woodwork and technical drawing teacher at Kesgrave Hall between 1978 and 1980, was told he would probably serve half the sentence.

The private boarding school, which closed more than 20 years ago, catered for 40 boys between the ages of 11 and 16 who had been excluded from mainstream schools for disruptive behaviour.

Today, a statement by the victim, read in court by prosecutor Georgina Gibbs, said: “[The abuse] is something I have had to conceal and hide from my friends and family through a mixture of shame and feelings of responsibility they would be left with.”

Most Read

During the trial, it was heard how on one occasion Stancliffe, who now suffers from liver scoliosis, forced the boy to perform a sex act on him and also locked him in a woodwork shed and tried to force himself on him but the boy managed to escape.

The jury was told that they could take into account Stancliffe's previous convictions.

In 1999, Stancliffe was convicted of seven offences of indecently assaulting three former pupils of Kesgrave Hall.

During that trial it was heard that Stancliffe had visited the boys' dormitories at night and sexually assaulted them while they were in their beds.

In 1982, after he left the school, he was convicted of three offences of indecently assaulting a 15-year-old boy.

In May this year, Stancliffe, suddenly resigned from his job at Trinity and All Saints College in Leeds where he had worked since 2002, citing personal reasons.

In mitigation, Stancliffe's lawyer, Jonathan Dunne, said: “This is a man who has not offended in 25 years. He is not in the best of health. He does not need to be imprisoned for the protection of the public.”

In sentencing him, Judge McKittrick said: “You were in a position of trust to that boy. One of things I have asked myself is if these matters were before the court in 1999, would a higher sentence have been imposed. I have come to the conclusion that the judge would have imposed a higher sentence. I consider the crimes are graver and more serious on this victim than on the other offences.

“However historical these matters are, these are grave breaches of trust.”

Stancliffe was also put under a sexual offender's order, which restricts his contact with any youngsters under the age of 18.

Following the sentencing, Pc Wendy Jochan, who has been working on the case since March 2006, said: “The victim had the courage to come forward. This sentence sends a message to those who commit these types of crimes. Suffolk Police will investigate all allegations, regardless of time.

“The victim found it awkward to come forward but is glad he has done so.”