Teacher worked at Suffolk school without permit

A TEACHER taught at a Suffolk school without a valid UK work permit for more than seven months before being sacked, it has been revealed.

Kate McGrath

A TEACHER taught at a Suffolk school without a valid UK work permit for more than seven months before being sacked, it has been revealed.

The 31-year-old Colombian woman was employed by Suffolk County Council as a modern languages teacher at an undisclosed secondary school last year.

She was only dismissed after a routine check following a change in legislation - seven months after her employment commenced.

It transpired the teacher never produced a valid work permit and was in the country on a limited visa.

The error was bought to light following a Freedom of Information request by a national newspaper.

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The request also revealed that the Home Office employed a dozen illegal foreign staff over the past four years - 11 Nigerians and a Ghanaian.

Nationwide three Government departments, 34 local authorities and 54 NHS trusts admitted hiring a total of 349 unlawful foreign workers.

A spokesperson for Suffolk County Council said the teacher had been employed from September 2008 until April last year.

He said: “It is every school's responsibility to verify all relevant documentation prior to engaging staff in accordance with regulations set out by Suffolk County Council's human resources department.

“This person's status (i.e. employed with invalid work permit) was uncovered through routine checks following a change in legislation.

“Once the teacher was identified as not eligible for work at that school then they were immediately suspended without pay and subsequently dismissed without notice.”

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