A college lecturer had a secret sexual affair with an 18-year-old student – until he was caught by her father, a disciplinary hearing has been told.
The Education Workforce Council hearing was told IT lecturer Russell Oakley, 38, suddenly arrived at the teenager’s house in the early hours.
But the hearing was told that he was confronted by the student’s father who recognised him as a lecturer at Cardiff and Vale College.
He is facing being struck off for his year-long sexual affair with the student only identified as “Learner A”, reports Wales Online.
Presenting officer Melinka Berridge said: “Oakley’s decision to form a relationship was motivated by his sexual desires to fulfil his own sexual gratification.
“He became involved in a romantic relationship which developed into a sexual relationship.
“But it was terminated by Learner A when she realised he was in another relationship with another woman.
“He shared personal information with her and provided her with his personal phone number.”
The hearing was told Mr Oakley would take the student for drinks in Cardiff Bay or to his apartment despite having another girlfriend.
Miss Berridge said the affair lasted for a year until October 2015, when her father called the college.
She said: “Her father reported that Russell Oakley had arrived at his house in the early hours trying to get hold of her.
“The college launched an internal investigation and Oakley was suspended.”
The hearing of the Education Workforce Council in Cardiff heard Mr Oakley admitted the affair although claimed he had tried to break it off for nine months.
Miss Berridge said: “He said he had been in a sexual relationship with Learner A since she was 18.
“He was under a duty to inform his manager about his relationship but did not inform her or seek guidance about it.”
Joanna McEvoy, a teacher who investigated for the college, interviewed Mr Oakley about the affair – and she said he knew it was “ethically wrong”.
He is facing being struck off for five charges including an “inappropriate relationship” which included “engaging in sexual intercourse”.
Mr Oakley is also accused of “failed to notify his manager of his relationship” and breaching the College’s Code of Conduct.
The hearing was told his conduct was “sexually motivated” and that he was “dishonest” about the affair.
Mr Oakley admits unacceptable professional conduct. He claims he did not reveal it because he didn’t want to lose his job because he was trying to get a mortgage.
But he is arguing that his actions do not merit being struck off the teaching register, given her age.
Adam Ohringer, representing Mr Oakley, said: “The facts are as they are. He has accepted that the relationship was ill-judged and has said it was unprofessional.”
But Mr Ohringer said the college’s code of conduct for staff did not say lecturers could not have relationships with older pupils.
He said: “The code does not expressly prohibit relationships with students over the age of 18, although it doesn’t encourage them.”
The hearing in Cardiff continues on Wednesday.
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