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Headteacher at St Aloysius’ RC College suspended after being arrested in fraud investigation

Diocese say it has instructed an independent investigator to work alongside the police investigation to review school procedures

25 January, 2018 — By Samantha Booth

Tom Mannion

A HEADTEACHER at an all boys’ school in Highgate has been suspended after being arrested on suspicion of fraud.

Tom Mannion, head at St Aloysius’ RC College on Hornsey Lane, was arrested last Wednesday after an allegation of fraud was made to the Metropolitan Police.

Mr Mannion joined the ‘outstanding’ Ofsted rated school for 11 to 19-year-old boys in 2004 and helped to improve pupils’ standards. He was awarded an OBE in 2015 for his services to education.

A spokesman for the Islington National Education Union (NEU) told the Tribune in a statement: “Islington NEU was surprised to hear at the end of last week that the headteacher of St Aloysius College, most of whose teachers we represent, was questioned by the police and has today (Wednesday) been suspended.”

He added: “In the weeks ahead, we look forward to be able to support our members through what are likely to be difficult timed for the school and to put in place and to implement properly agreed procedures that will encourage stable industrial and relation and improved staff morale at the school.”

The union added that staff were, apparently, called into a meeting and told Mr Mannion, who previously taught at inner London schools including Maria Fidelis in Camden, had been suspended.

The Diocese of Westminster said they would be informing parents today (Thursday).

A spokeswoman said in a statement: “There have been allegations of fraud at St Aloysius College in Islington and the governing body is actively working with the police to aid their ongoing investigation.

“The governors are taking the matter very seriously and have instructed an independent investigator to work alongside the police investigation to review school procedures.

“The governing body are also working in close partnership with the Diocese of Westminster and Islington Council, who are fully supportive of the action taken.

“The welfare and learning of all students at the College remains the college’s key priority in the weeks ahead. The governing body will not be making any more statements whilst the investigation takes place.”

Deputy head Bill Lawrence will take over as headteacher.

An Islington Council spokesman said: “We are aware police are investigating an allegation of fraud at a school in Islington. We cannot comment further at this time.”

A Metropolitan Police spokesman said: “On Monday, January 15 police were made aware of an allegation of fraud at a school in Islington.

“A 74-year-old man was arrested on suspicion of fraud on Wednesday, January 17 and has been released under investigation. Officers from Central North CID are investigating.”

When called on Wednesday, the school declined to comment.

*If you want to get in touch about this story, email sbooth@islingtontribune.co.uk or call 0207 424 3249.

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