Sunday 19 November 2017

Teachers in a 'drunken brawl' on school trip to Barcelona

Nou Camp
Nou Camp

Oliver Duggan

Teachers leading a school sports tour to Barcelona are under investigation after it was alleged that a drunken night out ended in a brawl that frightened pupils and left one member of staff with a black eye.

Football and netball teams from Stanley Park High School in Carshalton, south London, travelled to the Spanish city for a five day sports tournament during their half-term break in May.

A total of 75 boys and girls aged between 11 and 15 were lead on the £700-per-person trip by five members of school’s ‘performance’ department, which specialises in that arts and physical education.

The holiday included a tour of the Nou Camp, Barcelona FC’s home stadium, and a trip to the Aventura water park, but was allegedly ruined after a late night row between teachers scared the pupils.

According to reports, staff members, who were lead on the tour by Head of Performance Paul Stapleton, went out for drinks on the eve of their return home.

They have been accused of becoming drunk and rowdy, waking up children late at nights and leaving one sick pupil without her medication.

Parents have claimed the teachers started fighting in front of the children and shouting offensive comments at each other. The ensuing bust up is said to have left one member of staff with a black eye.

It is claimed that at least one punch was thrown before the fight was broken up.

Mr Stapleton declined to comment but the school confirmed it has launched an investigation into the incident, which it described as “extremely serious”.

One parent whose child was on the trip said the fight broke out between teachers just before the end of the holiday on May 29, while the group were staying at Hotel Samba in Lloret de Mar.

She said: "My child sent me a text message saying how scared she was to go to sleep because there were drunk teachers fighting. She said they were all teachers and were calling each other very rude words.

"They hit each other and the students were all very scared. One teacher came away with a black eye"

She added: "There was another girl who wasn't very well on the trip and they couldn't find the teacher who had their medication because they had gone drinking."

Another parent said: “If the pupils managed to behave themselves for a week then the teachers should be able to restrain themselves. They should not be going out and getting drunk when they have 75 children in their care."

A spokeswoman for Stanley Park High said the teachers would be sanctioned if an ongoing investigation “deemed it appropriate”.

“The school has taken all matters very seriously and we have been conducting a thorough and detailed investigation upon the return of the school trip into the allegation made,” she said.

"The safety and well being of our students is always at the forefront of what we do and action will be taken if deemed appropriate."

The 1,100-pupil school was found to "require improvement" in its latest Ofsted inspection, which was completed in July last year.

On the issue of student safety while outside the school's premises, the report concluded: "The school’s arrangements for safeguarding meet statutory requirements and the school’s record-keeping is exemplary. Off-site provision is carefully monitored."

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