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Suspended head of Harold Hill school acquitted of assault

PUBLISHED: 17:02 20 February 2015 | UPDATED: 12:25 25 February 2015

Geoffrey Wroe supporters outside the court

Geoffrey Wroe supporters outside the court

Archant

Geoffrey Wroe, the suspended headteacher of a Harold Hill special needs school, has been acquitted of two counts of assault

Mr Wroe, 64, was acquitted of two counts of assault, at Romford Magistrates Court, today.

The incidents were alleged to have occurred on March 6 and March 24 2014.

Speaking after the verdict Mr Wroe said: “I am totally relieved and a bit numb. I am looking forward to being able to concentrate on other things.”

He continued: “My desire is still to go back to work, see the staff who work there, and help bring it back from the last Ofsted report.”

District Judge Gary Lucie said the prosecution had not satisfied the burden of proof.

Judge Lucie also commended Mr Wroe as “a man of good character,” whose evidence was consistent with his police statement.

The trial lasted two days, with Mr Wroe sitting head bowed for most of the time.

Mr Wroe has been headteacher of Dycorts School, on Settle Road, for 32 years.

He was suspended from his post on March 27, 2014, with Krzysztof Nowobilski the current interim headteacher.

The school’s latest Ofsted report, published February 4, stated the school required special measures, and the standard was “inadequate.”

In January, Havering Council took control of the school’s budget to resolve “some issues.”

Mr Wroe had over 40 supporters at court, consisting of teachers, parents and children from Dycorts school.

Tina Smith-Galer, whose child attends Dycorts, said: “I absolutely want Mr Wroe back as headteacher.”

Jenny Carabine, who also has a child at Dycorts school, agreed.

She said: “The way the school is run has changed since Mr Wroe has left. I just want him back.”

Keeley Williams and her mother Debbie Williams set up the ‘Justice for Mr Wroe’ group.

She said: “I have supported Mr Wroe for 11 months and it is amazing that he has got through this.”

Havering Council said Mr Wroe would remain suspended pending an internal investigation.

A Havering Council spokesman said: “Now the legal proceedings are complete, we will carry out our own internal investigation into all of the circumstances of this case, of which we will keep Mr Wroe fully informed.”

The spokesman continued: “We’ll continue to support the school and the families affected during this difficult time.”


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