County Durham BNP teacher race claims dismissed

Allegations that a British National Party activist posted racist comments online while working as a teacher in County Durham have been dismissed.

The General Teaching Council (GTC) had heard Adam Walker used a school laptop to post descriptions of some immigrants as "savage animals" and "filth".

Mr Walker, from Spennymoor, said he had been singled out because of his views.

The GTC found him guilty of a single charge of misconduct after he admitted using a laptop during lessons.

Mr Walker was the first teacher to appear before the GTC accused of racial intolerance.

Religious intolerance

It was alleged the views expressed in the postings constituted unacceptable professional conduct.

He resigned from Houghton Kepier Sports College, in Houghton-le-Spring, in 2007 after his head teacher asked IT staff to investigate his use of the internet.

The GTC panel said it was "troubled" by some of the postings made by Mr Walker, who also claimed Britain was becoming a "dumping ground for the filth of the Third World".

But the three-member committee said it was not satisfied that the "intemperate" views expressed by Mr Walker during his time at the school were suggestive of intolerance.

The hearing was told that in one posting, it was alleged Mr Walker claimed the BNP had risen in popularity because "they are the only party who are making a stand and are prepared to protect the rights of citizens against the savage animals New Labour and Bliar (sic) are filling our communities with".

The teacher's trade union representative, Patrick Harrington, said Mr Walker accepted he was wrong to use a computer to access the online forum during school time.

However, he argued that none of the terms used by Mr Walker had demonstrated racial or religious intolerance.

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