Rudolf Steiner School Kings Langley: Mother tells how her son was forced to read a “very racial” poem about a gay monkey every week for a year

Rudolf Steiner School, Kings Langley decorated for Christmas PNL-160612-115933001
Rudolf Steiner School, Kings Langley decorated for Christmas PNL-160612-115933001

Denis McCarthy was accused of victimising a student from an ethnic minority background by making him read out a poem about a gay monkey every week for a year, the hearing was told on Monday.

A mother, who for legal reasons can only be referred to as Parent I, told the hearing she was not happy but Mr McCarthy refused to change the poem.

Speaking on Monday she said: “It was very racial.

“He was the monkey, a gay monkey. A lot of the children used to laugh.”

Both Parent I and Mr McCarthy confirmed it was standard for each student in the class to be given a ‘birthday poem’, which they had to memorise and read to the whole class on a weekly basis.

Parent I told the panel of various other things which had been witnessed in the classroom by her son, such as Mr McCarthy getting young girls to sit on his lap, and a lesson where students were told to list all the swear words they knew.

She said how she had raised various issues with the school but was not happy with their response. RSSKL had said Mr McCarthy would withdraw his physical attention from certain girls in the class “gradually” to avoid distressing them.

Later the school did ask for permission to speak to Student I for their own investigation but Parent I did not respond.

She said: “I didn’t want (my child) to be bullied in the classroom.”

Mr McCarthy asked Parent I if her son was easily confused between reality and things that were made up.

Parent I said: “Reality is reality.”

Mr McCarthy also asked Parent I what she meant by a statement that he was “the most powerful person in the school”.

She said: “We all looked up to you and thought what you were doing to our children was the right way.

“But we were groomed.”

Also this week: Rudolf Steiner School Kings Langley: Teacher tells of his unblemished record at misconduct hearing

Last week’s report: Rudolf Steiner School Kings Langley: Former teacher denies sexual assault in classroom