COPS have launched a
major sex and bullying probe at a military school linked to Dunblane
killer Thomas Hamilton.
teachers have been suspended at the posh MoD-run
Queen Victoria School in Dunblane,
Perthshire. English lecturer James McNally and computing head
John Lawrence are accused of having "inappropriate relationships"
with female pupils.
Assistant head Lynn Smith
and housemistress Ann MacDougal were also sent home after education
inspectors were alerted to allegations of staff bullying.
It is the latest
of many scandals to hit the boarding school, which was also
connected to gun nut Hamilton.
He organised camping trips
for pupils there before going on the rampage at Dunblane
Primary in 1996 and killing 16 children and a teacher.
Last night a source said:
"The school has been dogged by claims of institutional
bullying and sexual misconduct for years."
It has emerged that Central
Scotland Police have been called out TWICE this year after
receiving complaints. Following the visits, McNally and Lawrence
The source added: "Complaints
have been made that they had 'inappropriate relationships' with girl
Smith and MacDougal were
earlier suspended following an inspection at the school - set up in
1908 to teach sons of Scots servicemen - by education chiefs.
The insider said: "They
were sent home following personality clashes with other members of staff.
There appeared to be issues with other colleagues. Some people
might call it bullying. This only came out following an
HM inspection towards last year."
scandal also follows allegations in November 2003 that boys were sexually
abused at the school which has the Duke
of Edinburgh as its patron.
The claims came from a
former housemaster who said pupils were regularly preyed on by a vice
ring of toffs.
The perverts - some of
them major establishment names - allegedly picked up their victims in
limos before dropping them off in a distressed state the next day.
But it was claimed the
military code at the 270-pupil school meant the students kept quiet
about their ordeal.
The full horror emerged
when some of the victims broke down and told the housemaster
their sickening tales of sustained sexual abuse.
It was claimed one boy
was so seriously assaulted during an orgy that he later tried to kill
Angry politicians have
regularly called for an investigation into the school, whose pupils
have also been rapped for drinking, assault and bullying. In
January 2000, boarders were expelled after being caught having sex in
Five pupils were booted
out and a sixth was suspended. Three mixed couples, aged 16 and
17, were involved in three separate incidents over three weeks.
On another occasion, two
17-year old boys were escorted back from a trip to Brisbane, Australia,
after they broke a strict curfew and stayed out all night.
And two girls were sent
home from a Duke
of Edinburgh Award trip to Fort William, Inverness-shire,
after disrupting fellow campers and stealing condoms.
In March 1998, a 14-year-old
pupil was caught selling cut-price alcohol to teachers after smuggling
spirits into the school.
And another boy of 14 was
expelled after he stabbed a fellow pupil in the leg.
Police also launched an
inquiry into claims that a girl had been sexually assaulted by three
In the current scandal,
one of the girls involved in the inappropriate relationship claims is
aged 18, the other is 17.
Last night, a spokesman
for the school said: "There are ongoing investigations into alleged
incidents at the school. These are being conducted internally
by the school. Another matter has been referred to the police
and it is a matter for them." The MoD
admitted four teachers had been suspended.
A spokeswoman said: "We
can confirm that - following an inspection by HM Inspectorate
of Education towards the end of last year - two members
from the school were suspended from duties and are currently subject
to an internal disciplinary investigation.
"We can also confirm
that following a Central Scotland Police investigation
a further two teachers have been suspended from the school."
She added: "The
MoD has zero
tolerance of inappropriate behaviour or misconduct in any
of its departments."
A Central Scotland
Police spokeswoman said: "We are investigating alleged
incidents at Queen Victoria School.
Enquiries are still ongoing
and a report has been sent to the fiscal."
Victoria's has 122 female pupils and 148 male students.
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