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Queensland College of Teachers v WLJ[2017] QCAT 168

Queensland College of Teachers v WLJ[2017] QCAT 168

CITATION:

Queensland College of Teachers v WLJ [2017] QCAT 168

PARTIES:

Queensland College of Teachers

(Applicant)

v

WLJ

(Respondent)

APPLICATION NUMBER:

OCR065-17

MATTER TYPE:

Occupational regulation matters

HEARING DATE:

On the papers

HEARD AT:

Brisbane 

DECISION OF:

A/Senior Member Browne

DELIVERED ON:

22 May 2017

DELIVERED AT:

Brisbane 

ORDERS MADE:

  1. The suspension of the registration of WLJ as a teacher is continued.
  1. Other than to the parties to this proceeding and until further order of the Tribunal, publication is prohibited of any information which may identify WLJ, any relevant student, or any relevant school.

CATCHWORDS:

EDUCATION – TRAINING AND REGISTRATION OF TEACHERS – suspension of teacher – where charged with serious offence – whether exceptional case – whether suspension should continue

Education (Queensland College of Teachers) Act 2005 (Qld), s 48, s 53, s 54, s 55

Queensland Civil and Administrative Tribunal Act 2009 (Qld), s 66

APPEARANCES:

This matter was heard and determined on the papers pursuant to s 32 of the Queensland Civil and Administrative Tribunal Act 2009 (Qld) (QCAT Act).

REASONS FOR DECISION

  1. [1]
    The Queensland College of Teachers (‘QCT’) suspended WLJ’s teachers registration on 27 March 2017[1] on the grounds that he had been charged with using a carriage service to procure persons under 16 years of age pursuant to s 474.26(1) of the Criminal Code (Cth); using a carriage service to “groom” persons under 16 years of age pursuant to s 474.27(1) of the Criminal Code (Cth); using a carriage service to access child pornography material pursuant to s 474.19(1)(a)(i) & (aa) & (b) of the Criminal Code (Cth); and possessing child exploitation material pursuant to s 228D of the Criminal Code (Qld).
  2. [2]
    The QCT has referred the continuation of the suspension to QCAT for review.[2] QCAT must decide whether to continue the suspension or whether it is an exceptional case in which the best interests of children will not be harmed if the suspension were ended.[3]
  3. [3]
    Directions were made by QCAT inviting WLJ to file submissions as to why this is an exceptional case for ending the suspension of his teachers registration. No submissions have been received from WLJ.
  4. [4]
    As such there is no evidence before the Tribunal that this is an exceptional case for ending the suspension of the registration of WLJ as a teacher.  I am not satisfied that it is an exceptional case in which the bests interests of children would not be harmed if the suspension were to be ended.
  5. [5]
    I order that teacher WLJ’s teacher registration suspension continue. 
  6. [6]
    Pursuant to s 66(1)(c) of the QCAT Act the Tribunal can make an order prohibiting the publication of information that may enable a person who has appeared before the Tribunal, or who is affected by a proceeding, to be identified.
  7. [7]
    WLJ has not made any submissions concerning a non-publication order under s 66. The QCT submits that, based on the particulars of the charge disclosed, namely the exchange of explicit images via a chat service that includes an image of the relevant student in a school uniform, there remains a risk that identification of WLJ may result in the relevant student being identified.[4]
  8. [8]
    The QCT therefore does not oppose a non-publication order being made, but reserves its right to make further submissions regarding non-publication at the conclusion of the disciplinary matter.
  9. [9]
    On the basis of this submission, I am satisfied that it is appropriate to make an order prohibiting publication of the identity of WLJ, any relevant student and any relevant school.
  10. [10]
    As such I make orders pursuant to s 66 prohibiting the publication of that information.

Footnotes

[1]Pursuant to s 48 of the Education (Queensland College of Teachers) Act 2005 (Qld) (the QCT Act).

[2]QCT Act, s 50(5).

[3]QCT Act, s 53(1) & (3).

[4]Written submissions of the QCT on non-publication, filed on 22 May 2017.

Close

Editorial Notes

  • Published Case Name:

    Queensland College of Teachers v WLJ

  • Shortened Case Name:

    Queensland College of Teachers v WLJ

  • MNC:

    [2017] QCAT 168

  • Court:

    QCAT

  • Judge(s):

    A/Senior Member Browne

  • Date:

    22 May 2017

Appeal Status

Please note, appeal data is presently unavailable for this judgment. This judgment may have been the subject of an appeal.

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