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ESC vice-president’s emails hit out at ‘bitter minority’

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PRIVATE emails sent by Education’s vice-president made allegations about a ‘bitter and tiny minority’ of deputies who wanted to exploit an appointment controversy to frustrate the plans for the new 11-18 comprehensive schools.

Deputy Richard Graham. (Picture by Sophie Rabey, 25820595)

Deputy Graham also accused an unnamed civil servant of connivance and unprofessional conduct with claims that the appointment panel for the head of curriculum and standards was effectively rigged against two of the candidates.

Earlier this month a code of conduct panel ruled that Deputy Richard Graham had breached one part of the States’ members code in one sentence of an email exchange he had with two of his Castel parishioners, Brendan and Pamela Murphy, who subsequently made a complaint.

Up until now the detailed circumstances around the complaint were generally unknown, but today Mr and Mrs Murphy have gone public with extracted parts of

the emails they received from Deputy Graham.

They had written to him as concerned parishioners, asking whether the Education, Sport & Culture committee had ignored due process in appointing former London headteacher Clare Sealy to the role of head of curriculum and standards.

In a strongly-worded response Deputy Graham outlined his view that the committee had behaved with the utmost

integrity.

‘The allegations have been made maliciously on the basis of falsehoods, half-truths and innuendo.

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‘They have been made by a States deputy hell bent on revenge for having been deposed by the current ESC committee, with the connivance of a senior civil servant whose conduct has been wholly unprofessional to say the least.’

The appointment controversy started when an interview panel voted 4-1 in favour of a local headteacher becoming the new head of curriculum and standards, going against the wishes of the Education president Deputy Matt Fallaize.

The local headteacher accepted the job, but later withdrew, and the post was offered to Deputy Fallaize’s choice of Ms Sealy.

Two emails were sent by Deputy Graham to the Murphys, and in the second he revealed new details about the circumstances surrounding the tumultuous appointment.

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‘The only abuse of due process was conducted by a civil servant who convened a selection panel containing two members who were personally conflicted.

‘The composition of the panel was effectively rigged against the prospects of at least two of the applicants.

‘I hope this Machiavellian conduct may one day be exposed, but whilst I am a deputy, I have to mind my words.’

The code of conduct panel found that Deputy Graham had expressed himself and his opinions using immoderate language in one specific sentence, and Deputy Graham accepted the caution.

Helen Bowditch

By Helen Bowditch
News reporter

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