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. LINK
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." LINK
It has emerged that Central
Scotland Police have been called out TWICE this year after
receiving complaints. Following the visits, McNally
and Lawrence were suspended.
The source added: "Complaints
have been made that they had 'inappropriate relationships' with girl
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. LINK
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.
also launched an inquiry into claims that
a girl had been sexually assaulted by three pupils.
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." LINK
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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