A teacher arrested twice over drug allegations has avoided being banned from the profession.
Teresa Kujawski was working at the Will Adams Centre in Gillingham when she faced disciplinary action for not disclosing she had been arrested prior to her being taken on at the school.
The maths teacher had been quizzed in November 2015 over allegations relating to the production of a controlled drug on her premises. She was charged with the offence in January 2016 after she began working at the pupil referral unit.
Although related offences were admitted by her lodger, she was found guilty of allowing her premises to be used for the production of a controlled drug and was given a conditional discharge after appearing before magistrates in November 2016.
She had a disciplinary hearing a month later and was issued with a written warning.
However, she was then arrested in September 2017 on suspicion of driving while under the influence of drugs.
Although Ms Kujawski informed the school of her arrest, she did not inform it of subsequent developments including her charge and court date.
The offence was later discontinued but Ms Kujawski was dismissed by the school in May 2018.
As a result, she appeared before a teacher misconduct panel held by the Teaching Regulation Agency in February.
The panel heard how she didn’t think she needed to tell the school about the first arrest as her lodger had admitted the offence in its entirety shortly afterwards. Ms Kujawski therefore assumed that no further action would be taken against her and there was no need to inform the school.
Following her second arrest, she said she felt “ashamed and embarrassed” but recognised she should have kept the school updated.
The centre looks after 14 to 17 year olds and is rated ‘good’ by Ofsted.
The panel found two out of the three allegations put before them to be proved and further found Ms Kujawski’s conduct “amounted to both unacceptable professional conduct and conduct that may bring the profession into disrepute”.
However, they did not go as far as giving her a prohibition order, which would have banned her from teaching.
The panel’s decision maker, Alan Meyrick, said: “A prohibition order would prevent Ms Kujawski from teaching and would also clearly deprive the public of her contribution to the profession for the period that it is in force.
“On balance, I have concluded that a prohibition order is not proportionate or in the public interest in this case.
“I agree with the panel, that the publication of the adverse findings it had made was sufficient to send an appropriate message to the teacher as to the standards of behaviour that are not acceptable, and the publication would meet the public interest requirement of declaring proper standards of the profession.”
KentOnline attempted to contact Ms Kujawski directly and through her union but without success