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Teacher 'Walked Out' of Inquiry 

Irish Times (News in Short), 22 April 2010

A teacher acquitted eight years ago of sexual abuse charges made against him by a number of pupils at a special needs school prematurely "walked out" of a new inquiry into his 12-year suspension with pay, counsel for the school told the High Court yesterday.

Gerard Hogan SC said Patrick McGlinchey's response to the way the inquiry was being conducted was "wholly premature and inappropriate".

Counsel was opposing an application by Mr McGlinchey (57), Newport, Co Tipperary, for an order quashing a bid to re-suspend him over allegedly frustrating a new inquiry into his 1997 suspension.

When the case opened on Tuesday, Mr McGlinchey told the court the inquiry was not conducted in a fair manner.

Yesterday, opening the case for the school, Mr Hogan said the independent chairman of the inquiry, who was appointed by the Bar Council, had conducted the inquiry in an impartial and fair way.

Mr McGlinchey's claims that the children who made the allegations should have been brought before the inquiry did not recognise the limits within which the inquiry had to work, counsel said.

The inquiry and Mr McGlinchey did not have the power to call the children and the parents involved said they were not prepared to allow their children to attend.

However, counsel added, some eight or nine of the parents themselves were prepared to attend to give evidence. It also had to be borne in mind that these were special needs children with disabilities ranging from moderate to severe.

The hearing before Ms Justice Mary Laffoy continues.